Garbage fee increases at Mid-Huron Landfill Site

Paul Sherban, who is site supervisor of the Mid-Huron Landfill Site, stands by the piles of shingles and wood in this 2011 file photo.

Paul Sherban, who is site supervisor of the Mid-Huron Landfill Site, stands by the piles of shingles and wood from the Goderich and area tornado in this 2011 file photo.

HEATHER BOA Bullet News GODERICH – It will cost three dollars a tonne more to haul garbage to the Mid-Huron Landfill Site starting April 1, after a decision by its board Wednesday.

The fee will jump from $82 to $85 per tonne, making it the second fee increase since 2006. In 2006, the fee increased five dollars a tonne, from $75 to $80. Then in 2010, it nudged up to $82 a tonne.

Folks headed to the landfill site with a load of garbage in the back of a pickup truck will continue to pay $10, which is the charge for a load of 100 kg or less.

During its board meeting, members from the municipalities who are partners in the landfill site debated the fee increase, as they considered how much of an increase would be required to ensure a yearly surplus could be tucked away into a reserve to help pay for the costs associated with closing the landfill site, which is anticipated to occur in 2017, and maintaining it for another 50 years.

“It’s always confusing how much to put away in reserve. You probably can’t put enough away,” said Larry McCabe, who is the board’s secretary.  The board’s 2011 financial statement estimated it will cost nearly $14 million to close the site and maintain it for half a century. Closure costs include adding a cover of vegetation and building facilities for drainage control features, and leachate, water quality and gas recovery monitoring. After the site is closed, the board will continue to monitor the site.

At the end of 2011, the board had about $5.6 million in reserve funds – much like a savings account – to pay for these expenses. At that time, the actuary’s estimate adjusted interest earned on money set aside by each of the six partner municipalities in the landfill from 2.5 per cent to 1 per cent. For the Town of Goderich, its share of costs to close the landfill site jumped from about $1.89 million in 2010 to approximately $3.96 million.

“I’d rather be proactive instead of going back and asking the partners sitting around the table for more money one more time,” said Tyler Hessel, who is a councillor in the Municipality of Bluewater. He suggested a $3 increase in 2013, followed by a $1.50 yearly until the site closes.

Hessel also predicted a drop in tonnage to the landfill site in coming years, as a result of a move by the public to recycle more materials and reduce waste.

In 2012, the board projected a $110,000 deficit in its budget but a dry year resulted in lower than anticipated costs to haul leachate to Goderich for processing along with less snow removal and the board now expects a surplus of about $60,000, which will be put into reserve to help cover the closure costs.

Jim Anderson, a hauler from Auburn who owns Bin There, told the board $85 per tonne was a reasonable fee.

Participating municipalities in the landfill site board include: Town of Goderich, townships of Huron-Kinloss and Ashfield-Colborne-Wawanosh, and the municipalities of Central Huron, Bluewater and Huron East.

Leave a Comment

Please note: JavaScript is required to post comments.

About the Author