Bloomington's new twice-a-year free bulk waste collection makes its fall debut next week.
The city started charging $25 per bucket for bulk waste earlier this year to help plug a multimillion dollar deficit. The city also charges $100 per bucket for sod, dirt, concrete, rocks and shingles.
Free bulk waste collections will be scheduled each spring and fall.
Public Works Director Jim Karch said crews still start collecting curbside Oct. 1.
“There is no limit for household bulk waste,” Karch explained. “There are limits though as far as major demolitions.
“We’ve had people ask about tearing down whole garages, items like that.”
The city also takes bulk waste at no charge at its Citizens Convenience Center at 402 S. East St. weekdays from 7 a.m. to 8 p.m. and Saturday from 7 a.m. to 3 p.m.
The city accepts furniture, waste generated from cleaning out a house and debris from basement, interior and exterior remodeling. Crews will not accept commercial or food waste, liquids, electronics, or extreme demolitions, such as an entire garage.
Public works crews will also collect brush at the same time as bulk waste, not on regular free brush collection days.
The city expects it will take about two weeks to get all the bulk waste collected.
It appears many Bloomington residents would rather pay for bulk waste pickup than move it themselves.
Karch said public works crews collected more than 1,300 buckets of bulk waste over the last three months, with a majority of that coming in August.
“July typically is a lower month (for collections) during the heat of the summer, and as you start to approach fall and get into school time, that’s when you see a lot more of the collection of bulk,” Karch said.
That amounts to $33,000 in bulk waste fees for the city coffers.
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