Charging residents for curbside recycling pickup may be on the way out, depending on a review of the program scheduled for today’s Killeen City Council workshop.
Mayor Dan Corbin said the current system, in which residents pay $2.48 per month to recycle, may not have the right incentives in place.
“It does not make a lot of sense to make people pay to recycle, while those who do not recycle pay nothing,” Corbin said. “That’s not a very effective way to institute a recycling program.”
Most midsize Central Texas cities — including Austin, Copperas Cove, College Station and Waco — offer curbside recycling pickup at no cost to residents.
Harker Heights, Temple, and Nolanville do not offer curbside recycling pickup.
In cities where waste collection fees are based on the size of the city-issued trash can — such as Killeen or Austin — free recycling could save residents money, said Alexandria Bruton, public information specialist at Austin Resource Recovery.
“If you recycle more, the idea is you would have less trash,” Bruton said.
Corbin said a review of Killeen’s recycling program may be long overdue.
“My hope is that we will have a full-scale mandatory recycling program, one where everybody will have a recycling bin,” Corbin said.
Killeen disposes of its garbage at the Temple landfill. The city’s recycling is sorted at the Killeen Recycling Center and then sold by type to commercial businesses, said Killeen spokeswoman Hilary Shine.
Corbin said a potential partnership with Fort Hood or other regional entities may allow the city to offset some of the costs of instituting a new recycling program.
“We need to be concerned about the cost of the many tons of trash we haul off every day,” Corbin said.
“The city pays for many services, libraries, senior centers. ... If we get a whole lot of (recycling) going out at once, it may make more sense financially.”