Wellfleet Forum hosts Pay-As-You-Throw panel November 4

Residents encouraged to attend

The Wellfleet Community Forum will host a Pay-As-You-Throw (PAYT) panel discussion at the Wellfleet Senior Center on Monday, November 4 at 7 p.m. Wellfleet residents are encouraged to attend the discussion as the Town's PAYT program will go into effect on December 1.

The panel will be made up of Harry Terkanian, Wellfleet Town Administrator, Wellfleet Selectman John Morrissey, Lydia Vivante, Recycling Chair and Richard Willecke, the Wellfleet Board of Health Chair. Former Wellfleet Selectman Ira Wood will moderate the discussion.

Brewster is the most recent town on Cape Cod to adopt a PAYT system. At the beginning of October, the Town launched the program to the delight of some and the dismay of others.

Wellfleet, as Brewster before it, will institute PAYT in response to increased solid waste disposal costs. According to an FAQ released by the Town of Wellfleet, current trash disposal fees would double in cost by 2016.  The town considered three options to meet the increase: subsidy for the transfer station, an increase in annual transfer station fees or PAYT. This year, the Wellfleet Board of Health and Selectmen voted to institute PAYT. The program will go into effect on December 1, 2013 for residents and business owners who bring their trash to the transfer station and on January 1, 2014 for commercial haulers.

On Wednesday, November 13, a public hearing will be held at the Wellfleet Council on Aging at 7 p.m. to discuss the proposed draft regulations for the transfer station. The draft contains the proposed language as effects waste from motels, cottage colonies and condominiums and commercial haulers. A discussion and vote on the changes to Local Regulations Section 1000: Solid Waste Transfer Station will be held that evening. The decision to adopt PAYT was not put to the residents of the town for a vote.

Chatham also floated a PAYT solution, and on the town's Chatham Recycles website, said of the program, "It's simple, it's fair and it encourage recycling." That might be, but this past Tuesday, Chatham selectmen shot down the plan. PAYT had been suggested to counter higher costs of solid waste disposal when the town's current 20-year contract with SEMASS expires on December 31, 2014.

Wellfleet will be joining Sandwich and Brewster, the only two towns on the Cape with a PAYT system in place.

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