Solid waste fees increase

Published 9:58 am Tuesday, June 28, 2016

JACKSON – The Northampton County Board of Commissioners voted unanimously last week to increase the Solid Waste Availability Fee by 53 cents per month effective July 1.

Northampton Public Works Director Jason Morris reminded the commissioners that the Solid Waste (household garbage) Department is an enterprise fund that must break even each year.

He said the last fee hike was three years ago, but costs have been rising.

Morris said, “This recommended increase is directly related to an increase in operational costs and an increase in contract costs imposed each year based on the percentage in the Consumer Price Index for the Southeast Region for the transportation, collection, and disposal costs for municipal solid waste.”

County Manager Kimberly Turner said she supports the recommendation, noting that the Solid Waste budget has been operating in the red, “since I’ve been here.”

“Although the county’s budget audits have been good for all those years, the auditor has noted this (the Solid Waste budget operating in the red),” Turner said.

The increase in user fees was included in the 2016-17 budget, Turner said, which was approved later in the meeting.

Commissioner Robert Carter said the yearly Solid Waste bill would increase from $204.50 to $210.86.

Citizens were then invited to make comments or ask questions.

Tim Hollowell of Rich Square wanted to know how many households are included in the Solid Waste budget.

Morris replied, “We have about 10,440 accounts, but it can change each day.”

Commissioner Joseph Barrett made a motion to increase Solid Waste user fee by 53 cents per customer, per month starting July 1. The motion adopted unanimously by the Board.