Cottonwood Shores residents soon will receive recycling bins after the City Council approved a measure with Waste Management that will add $1 to residents’ utility bills for the service.
The city will cover the remaining $2.33 per month per customer for the recycling. Currently, Cottonwood Shores customers pay $23.50 per month for trash services.
Waste Management will pick up the recyclables twice a month.
“Our council is very sensitive to what our residents can afford to pay,” Mayor Donald Orr said.
He noted that because the city has few businesses, it doesn’t receive much in sales taxes. And 600 residents don’t generate the amount of property taxes other cities in Burnet County collect. Sales and property taxes are the two ways city halls collect money.
The city offsets those lower collections through utility bills, which help pay for other services such as police, streets, and parks, Orr said.
“Those have to be funded, and it has to come from utilities,” he said. “We wrestle with utility rates.”
Orr said one of the reasons for adding a recycling service is because of how often a recycling dumper near City Hall fills up. It’s now emptied three times a month. People are also throwing regular trash into it.
Orr said Waste Management would charge $1,500 every time it emptied the dumpster. City leaders asked for another option, which led to individual recycling bins for customers.
The service and additional $1 won’t begin until 2021. Waste Management will start delivering recycling bins in January. February bills will have the extra $1 added on.
In other news, councilors accepted the recommendation from the park committee to focus on improving and rehabilitating existing parks and sites and examine the possibilities of building a pickleball court and a sand volleyball court.
Those projects were generated from a survey used to create a parks master plan the city will use when applying for grants.