Why West Hartford Residents Need a Permit for the Recycling Center

An explanation from Director of Public Works John Phillips

The Department of Public Works offers an alternative waste disposal drop-off program for residential yard waste at its located at 25 Brixton St. This program is above and beyond DPW's core responsibilities for maintaining the town's property, road infrastructure, storm water collection system and providing curbside refuse collection.

Processing any type waste today is a very expensive operation. The town's management and processing of vegetative waste for disposal and or reuse is subject to the same economic drivers as any other waste management business operating in today's economy.

To that end, the Department of Public Works implemented a new fee-based permit program to our residents on July 1, 2012. We understand that this change in our operation has been difficult to accept and sometimes hard to understand.

Historically, this program has been offered free of charge to West Hartford residents. Our research has shown that almost all surrounding municipalities and local businesses charge fees for woody and vegetative waste disposal.

The "free drop off" of yard waste has left our program vulnerable to misuse by non-residents and commercial operators and challenges our management contractor's ability to properly manage the facility. This has lead to a growth in the annual cost of processing yard waste tonnage, some of which is not even generated within West Hartford borders.

Public Works management hopes to significantly reduce this out-of-town and commercial volume we feel we have been processing in the past. We are asking for a small annual fee to help us subsidize the ever rising cost to process this material by the resident property owners who utilize this facility.

With a resident verification program and a small annual user fee, we will be better able to manage the operation and its costs to our taxpayers at the residential recycling center. With the confidence that we can manage the facility efficiently, the Department of Public Works can continue to offer this alternative waste management program in the future.

Permits are available at our Department of Public Works administrative offices located at 17 Brixton St. Our business hours are Monday through Friday 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. A form is also available on the Town of West Hartford website and as an attached PDF, but the permit needs to be picked up at DPW.

Residents will need to provide a valid driver's license and a valid West Hartford vehicle registration. Leased vehicle registrations will need to have a West Hartford tax code.

No commercial vehicles or non-West Hartford registered vehicles will be permitted. Please call 860-561-8100 with any questions about this program.


John Phillips

Director of Public Works

VC August 22, 2012 at 12:57 PM
How was it that non residents were abe to use the recycling center when the attendant was checking everyone's driver's license?? Everytime I used the center the attentant checked my license. This is just another disguised tax imposed by the town to generate even more revenue off its residents. First the leaf vacuum collection is abandoned for leaf bag pickup and now this. The town said it was cheaper to use bags instead of the vacuum. How can that be cheaper when you need a lot more manpower to pick up bags? How can people who have many trees on or around their property fill up those small paper bags with all the leaves that fall every season??? Taxes keep going up and services keep going down. It seems the town loves to increase its education budget at the expense of services that the normal blue collar citizen utilizes. And they say Democrats fight for the little guy???
Patrick Dugan August 22, 2012 at 01:50 PM
In the 15 years we've lived in West Hartford, taxes continue to skyrocket, while services continue to be cut...or charged for. Wasn't Blue Back Square sold to us as a way to alleviate property taxes, thanks to the revenue it would generate? Because I certainly haven't seen any impact.
Eveliss DeVaux August 22, 2012 at 06:21 PM
West Hartford taxes are crazy! You're right Patrick, I thought Blue Back Square was supposed to alleviate taxes as well.
Erik Blazynski August 23, 2012 at 01:33 AM
If you want to point out that other towns charge for the service then you should also compare the tax rates. We supposedly pay higher taxes for better services. I think they realize that they are leaving revenue on the table here and decided to pick it up off the table.
Eric B August 23, 2012 at 09:22 PM
The new policy incentives people to throw more lawn waste into their regular trash, thus costing the town more in refuse handling. IMO, paying a competent individual to check licenses and dissuade non-res and commercial people from dumping would have been a better use of the towns money.


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