The City of White Rock plans a public open house Jan. 15 to give residents an update on garbage, recycling and organics collection – including the options for restoring multi-family and commercial service to the city. (File photo)

The City of White Rock plans a public open house Jan. 15 to give residents an update on garbage, recycling and organics collection – including the options for restoring multi-family and commercial service to the city. (File photo)

White Rock open house to discuss garbage options

Input sought from residents and businesses

The City of White Rock is about to lift the lid on garbage, green waste and recycling in the city.

The often-contentious issue will be aired at an open house Wednesday, Jan. 15, from 3:30-8:30 p.m. at White Rock Community Centre, 15154 Russell Ave., and input is sought from homeowners, renters and business people.

The open house will also bring residents up to date on all solid-waste collection in White Rock and how it compares with practices in other Lower Mainland municipalities.

Residents raised a stink in early 2015 after a decision was announced to privatize multi-family and commercial waste pickup by mid-year – and a shift from tax-supported solid-waste collection for single-family homes to a user-fee model – although the administration of that time claimed that changes were based on a study of best practices in solid-waste collection.

Contributing to public ire was the discovery that stratas and businesses would have to find and contract companies, and that the decision was made at a non-public meeting of council a month earlier, just a few weeks after the 2014 election.

In November of 2018, a newly-elected council unanimously endorsed a motion from new Mayor Darryl Walker that there be an overall review of the pickup of solid waste in the community, both public and private.

A review of the decision has been included in the 2018-2022 Council Strategic Priorities list, according to a news release on the open house from the city.

“Waste collection, recycling and composting are important components of an overall plan to effectively manage waste and to reduce our impact on the environment,” Walker states in the release.

“We listened when residents told us you want to take a second look at how waste is collected in this city, and we will be seeking public input into how solid waste collection is provided in the future.”

The solid-waste review is being conducted by Dillon Consulting, and the release says the open house is part of securing community input on whether White Rock should move to a city or city-managed collection of multi-family and commercial waste, or stay with the current system.

Free underground parking for the open house will be available at the Russell Avenue entrance.

For those who can’t be at the event, information – and an online survey – will be available Jan. 16 at www.whiterockcity.ca/waste