Information about Referendum Vote (November 5, 2019) on Ordinance 18-39

Click here for a PDF summary of information regarding the garbage referendum vote

Click here for Frequently Asked Questions

WHO: All Saint Paul residents who are eligible to vote in the 2019 general election.
WHAT: Saint Paul residents can vote on whether to keep Ordinance 18-39 in effect on the upcoming general election ballot. Ordinance 18-39 created the regulations and rates that apply to coordinated garbage collection for more than 73,000 residential 1-4 units in Saint Paul.
WHEN: The general election is Tuesday, November 5, 2019.
WHERE: To find your polling place, visit: https://pollfinder.sos.state.mn.us/. To vote before election day: https://www.ramseycounty.us/residents/elections-voting/voters/vote-election-day.


WHAT WILL  A “YES” VOTE DO?

There would be no changes to the current organized garbage collection program. 

  • The garbage haulers would continue to pick up garbage under the current contract.
  • The garbage haulers would continue to bill individual residents or property owners for the collection of garbage at their property. 

WHAT WILL A “NO” VOTE DO?

The designated haulers will continue to collect garbage under the existing contract.

  • The haulers will still collect garbage, but the financial obligation may be shifted from individual rate-payers to all property tax payers in Saint Paul.
  • The cost for garbage collection for 2020 is estimated at $27.1 million, which would require an additional 17.4% increase in the property tax levy if the City were to pay for garbage service.
  • To find out how this would impact your property taxes, use the property tax estimator:  https://www.stpaul.gov/departments/financial-services/city-saint-paul-property-tax-estimator.
  • The City will work with the garbage haulers to prevent double payments and ensure that billing and payment requirements are clear. The City will provide property owners with additional information regarding billing as it develops. 
FAQs “Yes” Vote
Ordinance 18-39 stays in place
“No” Vote
Ordinance 18-39 is repealed
Will the current citywide coordinated collection continue? Yes. There would be no change to the current program under the existing contract. Yes. The City’s contract with the garbage haulers would remain in effect. That means garbage would continue to be collected by the designated garbage haulers under the contract between the City and St. Paul Haulers, LLC.
Can residents share garbage carts? No. All occupied 1-4 unit residential properties are required to have service and a garbage cart for each unit. No. City ordinance requires each occupied residential building with 1-4 units to have approved containers for the collection of solid waste, independent of Ordinance 18-39. The garbage haulers will continue to collect garbage under the existing contract.
Can residents opt out of the citywide garbage program? No. All occupied 1-4 unit residential properties are required to have service and a garbage cart for each unit. No. City ordinance requires each occupied residential building with 1-4 units to have approved containers for the collection of solid waste, independent of Ordinance 18-39. The garbage haulers will continue to collect garbage under the existing contract.
Can residents choose their own garbage hauler? No. The contract designates a specific garbage hauler to collect residents’ garbage in a specific area on a designated day each week. No. The City’s contract with the garbage haulers remains in effect. The contract designates a specific garbage hauler to collect residents’ garbage in a specific area on a designated day each week.
Will the city be able to return to the “old” open-hauler system used before October 1, 2018? No. The current citywide garbage program continues. No. The City’s contract with the garbage haulers remains in effect.
How will residents pay for their garbage service? The current citywide garbage program continues. All residential 1-4 unit properties will be billed quarterly by their designated garbage hauler with standardized rates based on their cart size.

The designated haulers will continue to collect garbage under the existing contract, but the financial obligation may be shifted from individual rate-payers to all property tax payers in Saint Paul. The cost for garbage collection for 2020 is estimated at $27.1 million, which would require an additional 17.4% increase in the property tax levy if the City were to pay for garbage service.
To find out how this would impact your property taxes, use the property tax estimator:  https://www.stpaul.gov/departments/financial-services/city-saint-paul-property-tax-estimator.
The City is working with the garbage haulers to prevent double payments and ensure that billing and payment requirements are clear. The City will provide property owners with additional information regarding billing as it develops.

With the vote happening on November 5, do I need to pay my October garbage bill?  Yes. To avoid late fees, residents should pay their garbage bill for Quarter 4 services (October 1-December 31) by October 25, 2019. Garbage bills that are not paid by October 25, 2019 will incur late fees, and could be assessed to the 2020 property taxes. Yes. To avoid late fees, residents should pay their garbage bill for Quarter 4 services (October 1-December 31) by October 25, 2019. Garbage bills that are not paid by October 25, 2019 will incur late fees, and could be assessed to the 2020 property taxes.
Can I cancel my garbage service? No. All occupied residential 1-4 unit properties are required to have garbage service.
Under the contract, garbage haulers cannot cancel service.
No. The designated haulers will continue to collect garbage under the existing contract. Under the contract, garbage haulers cannot cancel service.
Will I be able to suspend garbage service when I am out of town on vacation? Yes. Under the current contract, property owners are able to place a temporary service hold on garbage collection for four to 26 weeks per year and not be billed for garbage services during that time. Yes. Garbage services can be placed on a temporary hold. Under the contract, the City would not have to pay for garbage service for property owners who have placed their service on hold.
Can I suspend my garbage service for vacant units/properties? Yes. Under the current contract, property owners are able to contact the City to suspend garbage service for unoccupied units/properties. Yes. Garbage services can be suspended for unoccupied units/properties. Under the contract, the City would not have to pay for garbage service for property owners who have placed their service on hold.
Can I negotiate a new rate for services with my garbage hauler? No. Under the contract, rates are set with cart sizes and service levels. No. The City’s contract with the garbage haulers remains in effect. Under the contract, garbage haulers may not negotiate individual rates with property owners.

 

BALLOT LANGUAGE:

TITLE: 
Referendum on whether Ordinance 18-39 should remain in effect.

QUESTION: 
Should Ordinance 18-39, entitled “Residential Coordinated Collection,” remain in effect for residential trash collection in St. Paul? Ordinance 18-39 creates new rules for the collection and disposal of trash and payment for trash service; and requires that certain residential dwellings have trash collected by a designated trash hauler. A “Yes” vote is a vote in favor of keeping Ordinance 18-39. A “No” vote is a vote to get rid of Ordinance 18-39. 

 


CITYWIDE GARBAGE SERVICE – FACTS & NUMBERS
AS REPORTED BY THE CITY AND THE GARBAGE HAULERS

Units per Property Type:

Single Family 59,878 (82%)
Duplex 10,575 (14%)
Triplex 1,354 (2%)
Fourplex 1,678 (2%)
Townhomes 685 (.9%)

Number of residential units (1-4) in the program: 73,485 Units
Number of units that did not have identified garbage service prior to October 1, 2018: 9,300 Units
Total tons of garbage collected in Saint Paul (October 2018 - August 2019): 51,647.36 Tons
Total garbage pick-ups (October 2018 - August 2019): 3,475,839 Pick-ups
Total missed garbage pick-ups (October 2018 - July 2019): 2,735 Misses or 0.1%
Total number of bulky items collected (October 2018 - August 2019): 10,619 Bulky Items

Learn more about the history, steps, and process transitioning to Saint Paul's citywide garbage service.