Garbage rates in Hermiston to go up 11%

From the City of Hermiston:

Residents of Hermiston will be paying more for garbage service in 2013, but can still boast one of the cheapest trash bills in Eastern Oregon.

City Council members approved a request by Sanitary Disposal, Inc. for a rate increase of approximately 11% Monday night.

The increase will raise the price of a 90-gallon cart, Hermiston’s most popular service, from $14.35 to $16.00 per month.

The new rate would place Hermiston in a tie for the cheapest solid waste rates among comparable Eastern Oregon cities.

For the most comparable service, residents of Baker City currently pay $16 per month, Ontario residents pay $21.15, La Grande residents pay $21.25, and Pendleton residents pay $26.00.

Although Hermiston ties with Baker City for the lowest rate, many of the other cities use smaller container sizes, which reduces the value those customers receive for their rates.

Baker City’s rate spikes to $21.18, La Grande jumps to $31.88, Ontario remains at $21.15, and Pendleton dips slightly to $24.38 when services are adjusted to reflect identical capacities of a 90 gallon cart.

The new rates, which will take effect January 1, 2013, have not been adjusted since July 1, 2008.

The latest rate increase comes nearly a year and a half later than expected because the 2008 adjustment was only intended to be a two year adjustment said Mike Jewett, President of Sanitary Disposal, Inc.

The company was able to postpone requesting an increase because fuel costs dropped from an all-time high in 2008, and recycling revenue was strong. The new increase will last through 2014.