GloucesterTimes.com, Gloucester, MA

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February 13, 2013

Rockport talking trash, parking fees tonight

ROCKPORT — Town residents who want to speak up or sound off over Rockport’s trash and parking sticker costs have the chance to do so tonight.

Department of Public Works officials will hold a public hearing about transfer sticker fees, parking sticker fees and costs associated with trash removal, starting at 7 p.m. at the Rockport Public Library.

The current rates are $25 for a residential parking sticker, $140 for a flat-rate transfer station sticker and $25 for a pay-as-you-throw sticker, with lower costs for seniors.

Fees have only changed slightly in recent years, and DPW director Joe Parisi said Tuesday that tonight’s public hearing is not aimed at any proposed increase or decrease in the rates; it is only to open up the rates for general discussion.

Parisi said the pay-as-you-throw method has become more prevalent in other municipalities, and has found success since debuting in Rockport as well. The pay-as-you-throw system allows people to pay for what they dispose of on a case-by-case basis, rather than the user paying a flat fee associated with using the transfer station.

There is an incentive to recycle more with pay-as-you-throw, since people are being charged on everything they throw away, Parisi added.

”One could argue it’s (the flat rate) less of an incentive to recycle,” Parisi said.

In previous years, transfer station sticker fees were $165, second transfer station stickers were $30 and are now $25 and the senior rate for transfer station stickers is $100, down from $120.

The pay-as-you-go bags are 40 cents apiece for an 8-gallon bag, 70 cents for a 15-gallon bag and $1.50 for a 39-gallon bag.

The stickers for the current year expire at the end of May. The sticker rates for the 2013-2014 season will be set after the meeting of the DPW Board of Commissioners tonight.

James Niedzinski can be reached at 978-283-7000, x 3455 or at jniedzinski@gloucestertimes.com.

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