June 14, 2023 11:24 AM
At its June 13, 2023, meeting, the City Council adopted a five-year schedule of solid waste rates for sanitation and enhanced sweeping, recycling, and solid waste collection services. The new rates will be effective on August 1, 2023, and annually thereafter on the first day of the fiscal year from July 1, 2024, through July 1, 2027. The approval comes after the Council’s support of a rate adjustment at its February 28, 2023, study session and following a three-year pause on rate increases. The last solid waste rate increase was approved by the City Council in 2014, and in 2020, the City froze rates at the beginning of the COVID-19 pandemic to avoid imposing additional financial hardships on ratepayers.
The new rates will support increasing community needs and the Council’s Clean and Safe Santa Monica priority. Enhanced services include providing organics recycling services to all customers to comply with State requirements under SB 1383, increasing alley cleaning frequencies, establishing a Bulky Item Illegal Dumping (BIID) Response Team to focus on dumping "hot spots” in highly visible high-traffic locations, supporting volunteer-organized community cleanup activities, servicing the City’s increasing inventory of protected bicycle lanes, providing additional zero waste community outreach and education, and further diverting waste from landfills to help achieve the City Council’s goal of zero waste by 2030.
Other recommendations adopted by the Council include a restructuring for multi-family and commercial ratepayers to eliminate the livable unit charges and water meter charges, while folding in street sweeping services into one bundled rate to ensure consistency among all customer types and align with solid waste industry standards.
Santa Monica is one of three cities in Los Angeles County that provides its own municipally run solid waste management operation to all its residents and businesses in addition to complimentary services such as year-round e-waste recycling, mattress recycling, and paper shredding events, and on-demand door-to-door household hazardous waste collection.
Community outreach for the proposed rates included presentations to neighborhood groups, meetings with major business stakeholders, brochures mailed directly to all Santa Monica residents and businesses, presentations to the Commission on Sustainability, Environmental Justice, and the Environment, and various other efforts.
Public Information Officer