‘Extraordinary Rate Adjustment’ for garbage, recycling will get public hearing in December

Notices about a proposed increase in garbage and recycling fees, and a December public hearing, have begun to appear in Palm Springs Disposal Service (PSDS) customers’ mailboxes this week.

The Palm Springs City Council is giving early notice that it plans to conduct a public hearing to discuss rate adjustments of up to 38 percent for some solid waste and recycling customers during its December 9 City Council meeting.

Notices about the proposed increase and the public hearing appeared in Palm Springs Disposal Service (PSDS) customers’ mailboxes this week. If approved, both rate adjustments would affect bills for six months — January 1 through June 30 — next year. Council members agreed to move forward with the public hearing on the rate adjustments at their October 14 meeting.

As proposed, the following monthly rates would go into effect. If customers are billed quarterly, the amounts below would be multiplied by three and appear in January and April billing statements:

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  • A single-family home with curbside trash and recycling services would see its monthly rate increase from $18.38 to $25.89.
  • A single-family home with walk-in service — where crews must walk onto the property — would see its rate increase from $23.98 to $29.26.
  • A customer with commercial bin service for a three cubic yard bin would see their rate increase from $166.94 to $215.92

The rate adjustments are needed, PSDS officials say, to recover costs associated with a regular annual rate adjustment and an “Extraordinary Rate Adjustment.”

The annual rate adjustment is a standard rate adjustment that reflects changes in the Consumer Price Index and changes in what it costs PSDS to manage the waste and recyclable materials that customers generate. Annual rate adjustments typically occur every year and are reflected in service fees starting July 1. This year, the annual rate adjustment was delayed while the city and PSDS negotiated the Extraordinary Rate Adjustment, which is a one-time fee that will cover costs that PSDS has incurred as a result of disruptions in the recyclable materials markets.

“These disruptions have caused PSDS’ costs to increase in ways that were not anticipated when the Franchise Agreement was signed,” according to a written news release from the city. “The Extraordinary Rate Adjustment would provide PSDS with compensation for the excess costs they have been incurring for the past several years.”

The Extraordinary Rate Adjustment will be removed from bills by the end of June. The annual rate adjustment will be reduced by half at the end of June because it is being charged for the entire year of service over six months. This reduced annual rate fee will be carried forward to form the basis for rates that will adjust again starting July 1, 2022.

Property owners who would like to protest these rate adjustments must do so in writing following the process that is outlined in the notice that was mailed. All written protests must be received by the end of the public comment period of the public hearing on December 9. Any objection submitted via e-mail or other electronic means will not be accepted.

More information: To learn more, visit the city’s Office of Sustainability online at www.yoursustainablecity.com.

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