Jacksonville councilmember says city should consider giving credit after recycling services stopped

Recycling bin in Jacksonville (WJXT)

JACKSONVILLE, Fla. – A Jacksonville City Council member is looking into a plan to pay back residents for trash that wasn’t picked up.

This comes after Mayor Lenny Curry suspended recycling services starting last week to help keep up with trash service backups city-wide.

City Councilman Matt Carlucci wants to know if the city can afford to pay back residents who have been expecting their trash and yard waste to be picked up but due to the national staffing shortage, many have been left with unmoved trash for weeks.

“There should be some consideration for that. Give them credit. I don’t think there should be a refund, I’m not sure what we do. I will explore all options but I’ve got to wait until the next budget year to do that,” Carlucci said.

Carlucci says his first step is to approach the county auditor’s office to see if this is economically feasible but he points out he may not have a lot of support at city hall for his push to pay back taxpayers.

“It’s just what I think,” he said. “The mayor doesn’t agree with it. A good number of my colleagues on finance don’t agree with it. I think it’s just of such magnitude there should be some consideration for lack of services.”

The garbage fee for one year in Jacksonville is $152.

The city said it is not making any profit off of recycling. In fact, it is costing the city to do it.

“There will be no refunds of the fees. So, you pay $152 a year, $12.67 a month, divided into four different services. So, if we broke that down it’ll probably be $1, $2. That’s not worth the paper that we’re going to print it on, and that’s probably what is going to be,” said Will Williams, Chief of the Jacksonville Solid Waste Division.

The trash issue has gone beyond the curbs of peoples’ homes.

Last week News4Jax told you about 14-drop-off locations the city set up for recyclables had become overflowing with non-recyclable trash. The city was scrambling to fix that issue.

News4Jax reached out to the mayor’s office to see if they have a response to what Councilman Carlucci is proposing, but so far we have not heard back.

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