MANATEE -- Manatee County residents could soon pay 72 cents more a month for trash pickup.
Mike Gore, the county's utilities director, presented the proposed rate increase for standard curbside residential service in the county commission's workshop Tuesday. The proposed increase, the first since November 2011, is expected to go before the commission in a public hearing Sept. 22. If approved, it would take effect Nov. 1 and the monthly amount will increase 5.29 percent to $14.33.
"Every month we wait to impose it, it will affect that rate model," Gore said Tuesday. He said the county notified the municipalities of the possible increase in May.
In Sarasota County, the collection services fee is $13.29 per month, and in Hillsborough County, the rate is $18.56 per month.
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The commission will also consider increasing the tipping fee, which is charged when someone brings waste to the landfill, by $4 per ton. The county's current tipping fee, which hasn't increased since October 2007, is $36 per ton and, if approved, the fee will increase to $40 per ton. In Sarasota County, the tipping fee is $57.56 per ton and in Hillsborough County, the fee is $68.16 per ton.
"We are on the low end even where we are today," County Administrator Ed Hunzeker said.
The proposed rate increases, according to the county presentation, are in response
to changes in the Consumer Price Index, which includes the amount paid to the haulers.
Since the last rate increase, there has been a 6.9 total increase in the CPI.
Gore said they did not impose earlier increases "because of the economy."
Commission Chairwoman Betsy Benac reiterated that the rates haven't increased since 2011 when, in the same period, the CPI has increased.
"We are not even increasing by the CPI we've had to increase based on our contract," Benac said.
Gore also asked the commission to consider a resolution "seeking the ability to adjust rates annually based on CPI increases for the life of current franchise agreements," according to the county presentation.
Gore said the commission still must approve the increase.
"It's not like we are going to do a rate increase and nobody will know," Gore said.
Claire Aronson, Manatee County reporter, can be reached at 941-745-7024. Follow her on Twitter @Claire_Aronson.