LEXINGTON COUNTY, SC — Changes in recycling and trash pickup are imminent for some Lexington County neighborhoods.
County officials and trash haulers are starting to outline the revisions in curbside collection that start July 29, sending notices to nearly 23,000 homes affected.
“We’re doing everything we can to let people know what’s coming,” said David Eger, county solid waste director.
The changes affect residential trash collection in unincorporated areas, a service used by one of four homes. Trash pickup is optional in those mostly rural areas, with many residents instead taking waste to 11 county-operated disposal sites.
The first change starts July 15 with delivery of new recycling carts much larger than bins now used.
Each 95-gallon container is five times the size of a bin, an increase that county officials hope will lead to more recycling.
Last year, 80 tons of recyclable material – 39 percent of waste received – were collected countywide, officials said.
There’s a trade-off with the change. Collection of recyclable materials will be reduced to every two weeks instead of weekly, a system that Irmo adopted a year ago.
The two-week pick-up has worked well in the community after initial confusion, Mayor Hardy King said.
“There was a little bit of adjusting as far as people remembering when,” he said.
Eger foresees a similar situation at first, saying “we’ll work through that” to keep trash from piling up at residences.
New pickup days are also coming for some – but not all – homeowners depending on location.
All types of waste – trash, recycling and yard debris – will be collected on the same day instead of different days, officials say. Pickup of trash other than recycling will continue once a week.
Changes in pickup days will improve efficiency so haulers can keep the price unchanged, officials said. Rates for service range from nearly $16 to $23.50 per month depending on location.
Private disposal companies provide service, with periodic County Council review of performance and fees. Neighborhoods around Lexington and Gilbert and along the adjoining south shore of Lake Murray won’t experience the switches until early fall, once haulers there are ready to revamp routes.