Discount on trash services approved for seasonal residents
Following significant pushback from Wareham residents about the cost of the town’s mandatory trash services, the Board of Selectmen approved a third — and supposedly final — adjustment to the new trash plan, this time for seasonal residents.
The seasonal resident discount, which was approved by the Selectmen during their Feb. 23 meeting, reduces the cost of curbside pickup from $365 to $245 or the cost of a transfer station sticker from $125 to $62.50. The discount is identical to the discount being offered to Wareham’s low-income seniors.
The rationale behind the reduced prices was that seasonal residents will use the transfer station less frequently and, additionally, those residents will only be able to participate in curbside pickup for six months of the year — May to October, for example.
“We’re giving them the opportunity to pay for the time of the year that they’re here,” Selectman Jim Munise said. “I think it’s fair to them, and I think it’s good for us.”
Last week, the board voted not to give seasonal residents a discount on transfer station access. This week, Selectman Alan Slavin said “looking at the numbers at this point, we can offer a discount to the seasonal [residents] for the sticker.” The board then approved offering seasonal residents the transfer station stickers at a reduced rate.
To qualify, Selectman Peter Teitelbaum said applicants will be asked to show proof that their primary residence is somewhere other than Wareham but specific requirements have not yet been established.
Along with the senior and seasonal discounts, the Selectmen have also approved an opt-out for people with “other means” of waste disposal, meaning those who can dispose of waste at their personal business, their job or via some other method. The opt-out application requires an explanation of where people will dispose of their trash and documentation proving that explanation.
The seasonal resident discount was approved by a 3-2 vote, with Selectmen Patrick Tropeano and Judith Whiteside voting against the measure.
“That, I believe, will be the last adjustment we have in terms of the billing for the trash,” Teitelbaum said.