CACHE COUNTY – Members of the Cache County Council are weighing a proposal that would put the countywide Green Waste Program on a year-round footing.
That plan, to be funded with an increase in county residents’ monthly trash fees ranging from $.50 to $1.50, was endorsed by the members of the county’s Solid Waste Advisory Board during their last meeting on June 8.
The Cache County Solid Waste Advisory Board is made up of county and Logan City officials, citizen representatives and the mayors of seven Cache Valley communities.
While praising the plan developed by the Logan Environmental Department, members of the county council also expressed a reluctance to take any action on the proposal without input from county residents and local city officials.
A public hearing on the proposal was scheduled for the Cache County Council’s meeting on July 28 and reconsideration of the Green Waste Program was tabled until August.
Cache County has been offering green waste collection and composting service in one form or another for 30 years, according to Issa Hamud, the Environmental Department Director for Logan City.
At present, green waste (leaves, tree branches and other organic material) is collected from drop sites in 15 valley communities only during the months of April and October. Those communities are Clarkston, Hyde Park, Hyrum, Lewiston, Millville, Newton, Nibley, North Logan, Paradise, Providence, Richmond, River Heights, Smithfield, Trenton and Wellsville. Hamud explained that Logan requested removal of its municipal drop site in 2014.
The collected green waste materials are rendered into either compost, mulch or wood chip products and sold to county residents.
In addition to providing county residents with a convenient disposal service for yard debris, Hamud said the objective of the countywide Green Waste Program is to reduce the amount of organic material going into the Logan landfill, where green waste takes up valuable space and produces environmentally harmful methane gas.
Despite collecting nearly 20,000 tons of green waste in April and October of 2019, the countywide program operated at a deficit of nearly $200,000. Meanwhile, local cities were clamoring for expanded green waste service.
Hamud said the proposed green waste program would fund year-round collection and compositing operations. The cost of that program would be a $.50 per month increase in trash fees for the composting and $1 per month for servicing the drop sites for county residents. The cost of the program for Logan residents would only be $.50 per month because the city has no drop site.
Hamud said an additional benefit of the proposed green waste program would be reducing the cost of compost, mulch and wood chip products to county residents.