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Decatur City Commission to consider setting residential sanitation fee

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Decatur City Commission to consider setting residential sanitation fee

City of Decatur sanitation division trucks. Photo by Dean Hesse.

Decatur, GA — The Decatur City Commission will meet on Monday, March 4, for a regular meeting at 7:30 p.m. at Decatur City Hall, located at 509 N. McDonough Street, and virtually via Zoom. There will also be a dinner session and a work session at 5:30 p.m. at Fire Station No. 1, located at 230 E. Trinity Place.

During the regular meeting, the city commission will consider setting the residential sanitation fee for 2024. The proposed fee is $310, which is a slight increase from the current fee of $305 per household.

To access the meeting, follow these instructions:

To view the agenda, click here.

This meeting will be held in-person. Members of the public wishing to participate during either the “Public Comment” or “Requests and Petitions” portions of the meeting may attend the meeting in one of two ways:

1. Attend in-person by coming to Decatur City Hall, 509 N. McDonough St.

2. Register in advance at https://zoom.us/j/94682865951. After registering, you will receive a confirmation email containing information about joining the meeting. You may also participate by phone by calling (929) 205-6099 and entering the meeting ID (The 11-digit number shown in the Zoom registration link.)

NOTE – This meeting will utilize virtual meeting technology. We cannot guarantee it will operate as planned. If your participation must be a matter of public record, attend the meeting in person or email your comments to City Manager Andrea Arnold at [email protected] by 5:00 p.m. on Monday, March 4th.

Members of the public may also view the live broadcast of the Decatur City Commission meeting at https://www.decaturga.com/citycommission/page/streaming-video

“This fee should fully cover the cost of providing the residential sanitation and recycling services. Current trends continue to show a rise in the cost of consumables needed in providing solid waste services, such as the price of fuel, vehicle parts and supplies,” Assistant Public Works Director Sean Woodson wrote in a memo. “The city of Decatur single family recycling program will continue to be collected by the Sanitation Division of the Public Works Department. The recommended fee accounts for the collection of comingled materials and a separate collection for glass.”

Woodson also recommended that the price of the pay-as-you-throw bags stay the same at $1.40 for the 33-gallon blue bag; 70 cents for the 5-gallon yellow bag and 40 cents for the eight-gallon green bag. He recommended as well that the charge for the commercial refuse container remain at $4.25 per cubic yard.

“It is also recommended that the charge for collection of 95-gallon carts remain $800 for one cart once per week and the charge for collection of 3 cubic yard containers remain at $1,210 for one cart serviced once per week,” Woodson said.

The city commission will additionally consider offsetting the residential sanitation and stormwater fees through 2026 for homeowners who qualify for the S-2 homestead exemption, meaning they are 80 years or older and have an adjusted gross income of less than $40,000.

“Using last year’s sanitation fee of $305 for the purposes of estimation, the cost of funding an offset would be about $33,550 per year, and if the storm-water fee of $258 is maintained (with an average equivalent residential unit for S-2 households of 0.7), the cost for that would be about $21,945 per year,” Finance Director Russ Madison wrote in a memo.

In other business:

– The city commission will consider allowing the fire department to begin a specification process for a new fire pumper. The department is researching hybrid and all-electric fire truck options.

“While energy efficient fire apparatus units are new to the market, we have found three manufacturers: Rev Fire Group, Pierce and Rosenbauer,” Fire Chief Toni Washington said. “The apparatus selection committee will continue to research and develop the specifications for the fire pumper that meets the needs of our community.”

The department has not decided whether the city would purchase an electric, hybrid or traditional diesel fire truck.

“The Fire Department is seeking approval to move forward with the specification of a fire pumper in an amount not to exceed $2.7 million,” Washington said.

– The city commission will consider approving an agreement with Toole Design Group for $249,839 to create the Safe Streets and Roads for All Action Plan.

“The Safe Streets and Roads for All (SS4A) Discretionary Grant Program is funded by the Federal Highway Administration (FHWA) to support planning, infrastructure, behavioral, and operational initiatives to prevent death and serious injury on roads and streets involving all roadway users, including pedestrians, bicyclists, public transportation, motorists, and commercial vehicle operators,” Project Civil Engineer Jennings Bell wrote in a memo. “The city was awarded a grant of $200,000 with a $50,000 local match last August. The city’s agreement with FHWA requires the action plan to be completed by November 30, 2025.”

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