Waste Assessment Fees On The Rise
Commissioners say it's a necessary evil. Because of costs associated with the recycling centers and other expenses, Marion County Commissioners say the Solid Waste Department is operating on a deficit.
In October of 2007, Commissioners increased the assessment fee by seven dollars to $76 a year.
On Monday night, Commissioners met to discuss how much they will increase the solid waste assessment fees as well as to hear citizens' views on these fees.
"The proposal could go from 76 dollars to a maximum of 120 dollars," said Marion County Commissioner Charley Stone.
Lenore McCall says between rising gas prices and taking care of her kids, money is tight.
"It's hard to try to feed them right now...and everything going up so high," said McCall.
And so McCall is not thrilled about the idea of her solid waste assessment fee rising as well.
While $120 a year may sound like a lot, but commissioners are also dealing with the charge of planning for the future.
Some options for long term garbage disposal would be to haul garbage elsewhere, expand the current landfill, make a new landfill or to build an incinerator.
"It is a long term solution (incinerator) that tries to look as far down the road as you can...it's not the cheapest solution..but the cheapest solution is not always the best option," said Marion County Commissioner Andy Kesselring.
In fact, Kesselring says that solution would cost somewhere between $260 and $270 a year by 2012
"It probably is in my mind the most environmentally friendly situation," said Kesselring.
Now by law, commisioners can not raise assessment fees anymore than $120 for the upcoming year no matter what long term plan they decide to go with. And, Commissioner Stone doesn't believe that rate will increase to more than $80 or $90 a year.
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