October 28, 2021

Palm Springs City Council to Hold Public Hearing on Adjustments to Solid Waste and Recycling Fees

By Bob Marra

The City of Palm Springs City Council will conduct a public hearing to discuss rate adjustments for solid waste and recycling services during its December 9 City Council meeting. The City mailed notices to all property/record owners and tenants that receive solid waste and recycling services.

The City Council agreed to move forward with the public hearing on the rate adjustments at their October 14 meeting. The rate adjustments would allow Palm Springs Disposal Services (PSDS), the city’s authorized waste hauler, to recover costs associated with a regular annual rate adjustment and an Extraordinary Rate Adjustment.

The annual rate adjustment is a standard rate adjustment that reflects changes in the Consumer Price Index and changes in what it costs PSDS to manage the waste and recyclable materials that customers generate. These annual rate adjustments typically occur every year and are reflected in service fees starting July 1. This year, the annual rate adjustment was delayed while the city and

PSDS negotiated the Extraordinary Rate Adjustment, which is a “one-time” fee that will cover costs that have been incurred by PSDS as a result of disruptions in the recyclable materials markets. These disruptions have caused PSDS’ costs to increase in ways that were not anticipated when the Franchise Agreement was signed. The Extraordinary Rate Adjustment would provide PSDS with compensation for the excess costs they have been incurring for the past several years.

If approved, both rate adjustments would affect customer’s bills from January 1, 2022, through June 30, 2022. Because each customer may have a unique set of services, the notice included rate adjustments for all the services that PSDS provides. Below are a few examples of the monthly increases that some typical customers can expect. If customers are billed quarterly, the amounts below would be multiplied by three and appear in January and April billing statements.

  • Single Family Home with Economy Trash and Recycling Services (Current Rate: $18.38; Annual Adjustment: $2.86; Extraordinary Adjustment: $4.65; New Monthly Rate: $25.89)
  • Single Family Home with Walk-in Service (Current Rate: $23.98; Annual Adjustment: $2.15; Extraordinary Adjustment: $3.13; New Monthly Rate: $29.26)
  • Commercial Bin Service for 3 Cubic Yard Bin (Current Rate: $166.94; Annual Adjustment: $17.64; Extraordinary Adjustment: $31.34; New Monthly Rate: $215.92)

The Extraordinary Rate Adjustment will be removed from bills by the end of June. The annual rate adjustment will be reduced by half at the end of June, because it is being charged for the full year of service over a six-month period. This reduced annual rate fee will be carried forward to form the basis for rates that will adjust again starting July 1, 2022.

Property owners that would like to protest these rate adjustments must do so in writing following the process that is outlined in the notice. All written protests must be received by the end of the public comment period of the public hearing on December 9. Any protest submitted via e-mail or other electronic means will not be accepted. For more information, visit the City’s Office of Sustainability webpage at www.yoursustainablecity.com.

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