Council for the Rural Municipality of Hanover has given third and final reading to a cost increase within its Solid Waste Special Service Bylaw.
Chief Financial Officer Derek Decru says their current bylaw was adopted in 2018 and has been in place since 2019. It expires on December 31st, 2023. This bylaw oversees Hanover's garbage and recycling collection and disposal.
The current rate being paid in Hanover is $167.90 per unit.
Hanover Reeve Jim Funk says the new rate for 2024 will be no more than $249.52. For the years 2025 to 2028, the maximum per unit costs will not exceed $266.73 (2025), $283.17 (2026), $300.58 (2027) and $315.61 (2028).
According to the municipality, the maximums are based on a five per cent annual inflation. Each year, municipal administration will project the costs of the service and set the annual price per unit based on the projections for the upcoming year.
The municipality has stated that the total per dwelling annual cost is not to exceed $315.61 per residential equivalent unit unless additional automated bins are required.
The total anticipated cost of the program is estimated at $943,685 for 2024. According to Funk, this is a fee-for-service bylaw and they are simply trying to recoup what they are spending on the process.
Prior to the municipality holding a public hearing back in June, Decru noted that there seemed to be a misconception that the addition of compost services is what is driving up the costs of the solid waste collection. However, Decru says that is not the case. In fact, he says covering the cost of compost is only about $7 to $9 per unit. In actuality, Decru says most of the increase is due to the costs associated with transporting the recycling to Winnipeg now that Eastman Recycling Services has closed.
The municipality received 11 letters of objection, with many of those letters having to do with composting and residents noting they would prefer to take care of compost on their own. Two residents attended the June public hearing, and both noted their objections.
Following the public hearing, Council gave first reading to the bylaw and then sent the matter to the municipal board. Funk says the province has since ruled in favour of the proposal. As a result, Council gave 2nd and 3rd reading at its latest meeting and the change will now come into effect next year.
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