Town board recycles plan for once-a-week garbage pickup

. . . with 64 reader comments since Friday

October 8, 2010
by Christine Yeres

UPDATE: At 11:45 a.m. on Friday, October 8, Supervisor Barbara Gerrard confirmed that the town board has approved the one-day-a-week pickup, which will begin on April 1, 2011.

One year ago, the New Castle Town Board proposed reducing the number of residential garbage pickups from twice a week to once a week, with recyclables picked up on the same day by a truck with two separate compartments, one for paper, the other for glass-metal-plastics. Because both trucks will come on the same day, residents will only need to put out all their materials once each week.  Under this plan the town would save $200,000 per year in carting fees, which would translate to approximately $36 in savings for each household.

As the board saw it, once a week pickup would not only save money, but it would raise residents’ awareness of what they tossed into the garbage.  Once residents realized they must keep their garbage for a week between pickups, they would recycle more, reasoned town board members. 

Although a survey at the time by showed that, of 535 respondents, exactly half of them were in favor of the proposal and half opposed, emails to town board members fell more to the negative side. Town Supervisor Barbara Gerrard said she received about 20 emails on the matter, most objecting to the proposal.  The town board backed off the plan, vowing to educate residents about its benefits and try again the next year.

The board considers, then rejects a plan that would cut recycle runs

Two weeks ago the town board flipped last year’s plan and proposed retaining the two garbage pickups and reduce recycling pickups to once per week, alternating between paper one week and glass-metal-plastics the next. 

This plan would save $150,000 in the first year and $98,000 for the next five years, but it depended upon the town’s purchase of a $260,000 “split packer” (a garbage truck with two separate compartment) for the carting company to operate. The cost of the truck would take several years to amortize.

Supervisor Gerrard brought the new plan to the Sustainability Advisory Board (SAB) for advice. “I was trying to look for some middle of the road solution,” explained Gerrard.  But the members of the SAB told her they were strongly opposed to the reduction of the recycling pickups on the grounds that it would undermine their efforts to promote recycling. They feared the alternating schedule would confuse residents and result in recyclables being tossed into the garbage. 

Board members get feedback on Community Day

The board presented the new proposal to the community at their booth on Community Day, September 25.  “We heard from residents who looked at the two-garbage / one-recycle pickup plan, and said to us ‘Wait, what happened to the once-a-week garbage pick up?  We thought that’s what was going to happen!”  Gerrard, who preferred the original plan by far, not least for the greater savings it would bring New Castle, brought the residents’ input and SAB’s opinions back to her board.

At Tuesday night’s work session, October 5, the board officially returned to its original proposal: One garbage pickup per week, recyclables picked up on the same day.  “Towns like Armonk, Pleasantville and Croton only pick up garbage once a week.  Whatever they’re doing right, we can do right, too,” said Gerrard. Plus, she noted when asked about the plan later in the week, although it would save residents only $36 per household per year on their $520 yearly carting fees, the $200,000 per year for the 5,600 households in New Castle amounted to a $1 million savings over five years.

How does a once-a-week garbage pickup plan work to encourage people to recycle more?  “When you throw out a cereal box, for example,” Gerrard explained, “and you know you have limited space in your garbage, you’ll take out the plastic liner and put the cereal box with the newspapers instead of with the garbage.” 

“A lot of people don’t really care about recycling,” noted board member Michael Wolfensohn.

“But when they realize there’s only one pickup a week they may care,” responded board member Robin Stout.

“I’m about cost-saving,” replied Wolfensohn, “but I’d like to see us take baby steps on this.”

“This once-a-week garbage pickup doesn’t include the purchase of a truck,” Town Administrator Gennaro Faiella pointed out, “and the yearly savings are $200,000 each year, rather than the plan for two garbage picks ups which would have saved $150,000 for the first year and only $98,000 yearly for the next five years.” 

“But one of the residents’ objections was that the savings per household was only $36,” Wolfensohn reminded the other board members.

“But it’s also a matter of saving 9500 gallons of diesel fuel and 109 tons of CO2 emissions with one truck run fewer,” Faiella argued.  He noted also that typically 80% of residential garbage is collected in the first pickup of the week; the second pickup is ordinarily much lighter.

If the board approves the plan for once-a-week garbage pickup and recyclables picked up the same day, it would begin in April 1, 2011, giving residents time, said Gerrard, to accustom themselves to the new schedule, or even practice for it, without the added pressure of winter weather conditions to deal with.  Because of the April start, the savings for the first year of operation would be $150,000 and $200,000 for every full year thereafter. 

UPDATE: In answer to a reader comment below, NCNOW responded on Friday, October 8, in the comment box: “Editor’s Note:  The discussion of once-a-week garbage pickup occurred as part of a budget talk within a town board work session. The board gave no indication during the work session discussion that members had decided to implement the once-a-week pick up. There was no vote.  NCNOW published the original story at 6:00 a.m. Friday, October 8.  Supervisor Barbara Gerrard confirmed on Friday morning at 11:45 that the board had in fact approved the change (she did not elaborate on how the board had approved it) and that the new schedule will begin on April 1, 2010.  But when NCNOW asked town board member Michael Wolfensohn whether the board had approved implementation of the once-a-week pickup, he said, “I believe that’s something that we’re going to discuss during the budget approval process and we don’t have an outcome on it yet.”

We encourage civil, civic discourse. All comments are reviewed before publication to assure that this standard is met.

maybe the town will supply us with larger recycling bins instead of the too small ones we have.

By ready to move to ct on 10/08/2010 at 7:11 am

As Ralph Kramden would say, “Whoa, what a surprise!”

Let’s see, after the quarter of a million $ plunked down for the gazebo, now the board needs to cut out that amount from this coming year’s budget. So even after many valid reasons for maintaining the twice weekly collections were raised, they go ahead and do what they want anyway. (Check the town website, this has already been approved.)

Great, with the coyotes on the rise, hundreds of raccoons around, and now bears as close as Mt Kisco, now we’ll have an over-abundance of garbage to further entice wildlife. It will beautify New Castle to see four and five cans from each household rolling around in the streets on a windy day, especially on rtes 117, 120 and 133 where it especially becomes a hazard in traffic. And people will be loving the aroma from their week-old garbage in their garages, two weeks if you happen to miss your collection day…

Hey, great idea, maybe the gazebo, the “destination”, will have a great big bin to collect the sanitation for those in-between days!

Thanks again town board.

By eg on 10/08/2010 at 7:16 am

If you want to see how to save New Castle some tax dollars go check out the number of Town owned cars at Town Hall and at Hunts lane on a weekend. It amazing that such a small town provides dozens and dozens or cards at our expense. Most have 1 driver.

By Town Waste on 10/08/2010 at 7:18 am

i don’t like this plan, one bit.  as it is, my recycle bins and garbage cans are full to brim, on pick-up days. now i would have to buy more containers and come up with more space to store this extra garbage and recyclables.  sounds like a huge inconvenience to save $36 a year!  i would guess that the majority of people in favor of this plan, have small household sizes.

By thanks but no thanks on 10/08/2010 at 7:35 am

Absurd doesn’t even begin to describe this.  $36 is the price of a movie for three people. And that’s without popcorn and drinks.  Let’s also factor in people losing jobs when they have less hours to work and it becomes completely ridiculous.  I want my garbage gone twice a week.  I am a recycler and plan to continue recycling but there is a big difference in true garbage, and paper products.  Let’s reduce recycling to twice per month if we have to make any changes.  Paper doesn’t bring rodents, bugs, coyotes and bears. Town Board, wake up and start doing what the people of New Castle want.

By Leslie on 10/08/2010 at 7:48 am

Let’s see.  A gazebo nobody wants will cost $200k. The savings on going to once a week garbage is 200k.  How many other things could be saved without wasteful spending?

By Hmmm on 10/08/2010 at 7:55 am

Yes, once a week pick up and save the town money. However you do it, citizens will learn. Please do not do it in “baby steps.”  We are not first graders.  I think a few lessons at the recycling center on how to recycle might be helpful. I’ve seen many items in the wrong bin. Go for it.

By Cricket Laun on 10/08/2010 at 8:11 am


By AMY SCHANDLER on 10/08/2010 at 8:25 am

If the Town Board is serious about saving money than I suggest they find a way to buy/build a Gazebo for $50,000 and not spend the $200,000 earmarked. That is a ridiculous and insulting waste of money. With the $150,000 saved we wont have to change garbage pick-up schedule. How can it possibly be that an outdoor structure that requires no plumbing, no heating or insulation, and already has electricity running to the site can cost $200000? Our tax dollars in action as spent by our elected officials- what a crying shame!

By Resident on 10/08/2010 at 8:33 am

“A lot of people don’t care about recycling” says board member Michael Wolfenson. 
Recycling is the law here in Westchester County, its mandatory. They need to care.

By Environmentally awake on 10/08/2010 at 8:39 am

I think once a week is fantastic. In addition, if you factor in the benefits, both financial and air quality-wise of buying and burning half the amount of diesel fuel each year (which must be a significant purchase), it’s even better for all of us.

By Pete Friedrich on 10/08/2010 at 9:06 am

The Town Board and Town Administrator are clearly out of touch with their constituents.  We know how to recycle and if they want more recycling then they should put more effort into education in that area.  There are no studies that indicate reducing garbage pick ups will increase recycling—just the “off the top of the head” conclusions of Board members.

What will increase are the odors, and the rodents, insects and animals getting into the garbage.  Save money by not building the gazebo, not by decreasing garbage pick ups!  Remember the Board’s decision when it comes time to vote for them again.

By A Recycler on 10/08/2010 at 9:18 am

Has the Town Board already approved this, as commentor “eg” states, or is the article correct that it is still being considered?

Editor’s Note:  Along with the rest of the still-tentative budget, the board is considering it.

Editor’s Note:  Sorry.  Correction.  NCNOW just learned that the town website announces today that “Garbage Collection begins April 1st, 2011.”  So it looks as though it has been decided.

By A New Castle citizen on 10/08/2010 at 9:22 am

I strongly oppose a once-a-week garbage collection.  Most households with young children accumulate a lot of garbage, even while being responsible about recycling materials. Reducing the pick up to once a week forces families to store rotting/smelly garbage in and around their homes which is unsanitary and can attract wilds animals, which are a growing problem in our community. While a town gazebo is a nice thing to have, I would much rather have my tax dollars go to maintain the current garbage collection schedule.

By Resident on 10/08/2010 at 9:28 am

I wonder if the board has ever considered a plan similar to Seattle’s.  They have a system that is based on their usage of the system, more like a bridge toll or other fee-for-service tax.  There, recycling pick-up is free, but rather than pay flat taxes for garbage pickup the residents pay according to how much they put out.  It encourages recycling, composting, and compacting your garbage.  If someone chooses to ignore the incentive to be greener, the rest of the community doesn’t have to pay for their bad habits.

By Encourage Recycling on 10/08/2010 at 9:35 am

As it seems that one of the main problems the first time through with this issue was that people who support it did not speak up, allow me to do so now. I fully support the decision to switch to a once a week pickup. I think it would be great to save the town some money, keep trucks off the road, and only have cans blowing around the street once a week. I’d encourage anyone else who supports this change to contact the town board and make their voices heard this time.

By Trisha Howell on 10/08/2010 at 9:50 am

We should do this, as good citizens, and as responsible community members.  It’s not hard to reduce, reuse, and recycle.  We are Chappaqua residents for 15 years with a large family (5) and 2 dogs and we never use the 2d day of pick-up, except for recycling.  This has nothing to do with the gazebo or other town costs.  It’s time for us all to reduce everywhere we can.

By Resident on 10/08/2010 at 9:50 am

There is no mention of bulk household pickup which we now have once a week with our 2nd garbage pick up.  How will this be affected or is this included in the term, recycling?
Frankly, mine is a small household that will not be seriously affected by once a week pickup but I empathize with households with 2-3 children which, I believe is most of Chappaqua.  These families produce a lot of garbage and I understand that reducing the garbage pickup to once a week would be a big deal for them.  Really, it hardly seems worth it for a savings of $36/year.

By stonee on 10/08/2010 at 10:02 am

For $200k, the town board would rather build a Gazebo!!! How many people uses the Gazebo once a year? Now how many households put out their garbage twice a week?  I think it is pretty obvious how our tax dollar should be spent. This begs the question if the elected officials have the residents’ best interest at heart. Please do not insult the residents’ intelligence by using “encouraging recycling and reducing carbon footprint” as an excuse…

By This is insane!!! on 10/08/2010 at 10:05 am

Cancel the useless gazebo and replace with grass;
Sell all the town-owned cars and replace with mileage reimbursement for town use of a personal car - LIKE THE REST OF CORPORATE AMERICA;

Why are we even debating this!?!?!?

By Garbage yes Gazebo no on 10/08/2010 at 10:05 am

We have a Sustainability Advisory Board?

By Waste not, want not on 10/08/2010 at 10:41 am

It almost seems as though it is assumed if you go to 1 time per week people will recycle more.  I already recycle all of my plastics, metals, etc, and, with a family of 5, I still have a lot of garbage.  This will not increase my recycling,  but it will increase the desire of mice to sneak in my garage for a nibble.  My biggest concern is the smell—it may not be too bad in the winter, but with a week of 90 degree temperatures, my garage, which sits under a family room and has a door leading into my kitchen, will smell enormously.  Please don’t do this!!!

By Don't want the stink on 10/08/2010 at 10:43 am

The Town Board has again displayed its arrogance and disregard for the Town of New Castle residents. Refuse should be disposed of twice a week for sanitary and safety reasons. Saving $36 per year per household is an asinine reward for a reduction in refuse collection services. Personally, I am willing to pay $36 more per year to maintain twice a week refuse collection services. The current Town Board needs to be replaced in its entirety for this once per week proposal as well as, in my opinion, their other incompetent decisions.

By Replace The Town Board on 10/08/2010 at 10:54 am

I strongly oppose once per week garbage pick-up, and wish the community had been properly surveyed about their usage of the second day of pick-up before a decision was made. I hope this decision can be reversed before implemented, and further investigation of the matter undertaken.  A bear was cited in Mount Kisco just the other day, and I have seen three coyotes on my property over the past two years. Keeping our garbage longer is only going to worsen the problem of unwanted animals around residences. Just look to Yonkers to see what can happen.  Residents were throwing garbage in business dumpsters and other people’s trash cans when they did not want to house their own garbage for more than a week.  If you miss the one day collection, two weeks worth of garbage is more than most households would want to store. Many of us are away for business or pleasure for more than one week at a time, and this would cause additional hardship. Also, what would happen to bulk pick-up?  That once per week service has been a wonderful convenience for all of us. I see more and more mattresses around Chappaqua being discarded now that bed bugs are on the rise. Would anyone like to keep them for more than one week if they were infested? We need to try to maintain the services we do recieve for the amount of taxes we pay, not cut them.  Please find another way to save.

By Concerned on 10/08/2010 at 11:10 am

Let’s see a plan that saves money and reduces carbon output. Seems like a no brainer.  My family of 4 puts out one garbage can per week plus recycling.  To echo the above sentiment: why are we even debating this?

By Resident on 10/08/2010 at 11:14 am

How could NCNOW do such poor reporting by saying in the article that there was not a final decision by the Board on this!  Clearly NCNOW got quotes from the meeting, why not the fact that the Board already VOTED on this.  It took a commentor to point out (at about 7 am) that it was already on the town’s website that this had passed the Town Board.
NCNOW said in response to a comment after 9 am that they just learned from the Town website that this was approved.
Sloppy reporting! 

Editor’s Note:  The discussion of once-a-week garbage pickup occurred as part of a budget talk. The board gave no indication at the work session that members had decided to implement the once-a-week pick up. There was no vote.  Supervisor Barbara Gerrard confirmed this morning at 11:45 that the board has in fact approved the change (she did not elaborate on how the board had approved it) and that the new schedule will begin on April 1, 2010.


By Town constituent on 10/08/2010 at 11:21 am

The most ridiculous idea I have ever heard of to save $36 a year per household. I live in a part of town where we have town sewers so all my kitchen (food) rubbish goes down my disposal; what about the people who have septic systems (which makes up a very large percentage of homes in New Castle)and should not dispose of kitchen refuse in a disposal? All their kitchen rubbish will have to be put in trash cans and will be a great attraction to animals, etc. CAN the Gazebo idea and keep the 2X a week garbage pickups. Additionally, if the Gazebo was properly built and maintained, it would not need replacement.

By twice a week on 10/08/2010 at 12:05 pm

Big savings. Eliminate garbage pickups entirely and require residents to deposit their refuse as often as they want at the Town dump. DUH!!!

By An even more ridiculous solution on 10/08/2010 at 12:56 pm

Sorry to see the intemperate complaint by Town constituent on NCNow’s reporting.
Very happy to learn that the once a week pickup will be happening. This will be a saving
well beyond the $36.  There are many towns where this already in effect with no harm and
many benefits. Surly all those who are complaining about the reduction can find a way to
better secure their garbage.

I say bravo to the Town Board for their prudent and wise decision.

By Bob on 10/08/2010 at 1:48 pm

Maybe we can use all those extra town vehicles to pick up our garbage. Last I checked we have cars and trucks for the Rec Department, we have sedans, cruisers and SUV’s for our police department. we even have “TRAFFIC CONTROL” vehicles. If the town board is serious about saving money get rid of some of these unneeded expenses including a $200k gazebo! I hope everyone is sharing these thoughts with our friends who are not reading NEWCASTLENOW. We must remember this and other issues (Chapp Crossing) so when its time for elections we vote these incompetent people out of our town and out of our lives.

By Stupidity! on 10/08/2010 at 1:49 pm

Will one garbage truck be able to handle that which was once handled by two? Are we now supposed to cut back on consumption? New Castle’s air quality and bucolic roadways will be something to behold come once-a-week trash collection day.

The many reader comments above, last year’s garbage collection survey results, the gazebo issue, and the many other illogical Town Board decisions that have been rammed down the taxpayers throats only prove this arrogant Town Board would rather dictate than heed to the people’s concerns and requests.  New Castle is years overdue for a change to its long standing one-party government wherein the uncontested Supervisor’s position is handed down to the next senior board member.

By Representation of the people? on 10/08/2010 at 1:53 pm

Regarding Town Constituent’s NCNOW comments above, we say hats off to the barebones NCNOW staff for their continued hard work and excellence in providing town residents with the only means of receiving current unbiased town news.  It’s impossible for a reporter to scoop on behind-closed-door dealmaking, especially when the facts are not truthfully provided.  The once-a-week garbage collection deal was most likely a fait accompli long before we turned our calendars to 2010.

By Fait accompli on 10/08/2010 at 2:31 pm

It’s interesting what people will say when they don’t have to put their name on it. I’m a member of the Town’s Sustainability Advisory Board and we debated this issue for a long time. We all voted to go for once a week pick-ups. Besides the money saved going to once a week pickup is the equivalent of getting 600 cars off the road. We also considered Pay As You Throw systems but decided that most people would not go for that. 1/2 of the town residents surveyed thought once a week pickup was a good idea. If you would like to get involved with these issues by all means join us. We, the SAB, by the way, do not debate gazebos. As someone else commented, one has nothing to do with the other.

By Richard Goldsmith on 10/08/2010 at 4:07 pm

Mr. Goldsmith, thank you for your service to the community.  However, and with all due respect, since Gazebos and Garbage are both part of the taxpayer supported town budget, I am unclear why “one has nothing to do with the other”  Perhaps I am not as familar with town politics, but I believe the budget is passed and assessed as a package - which would imply that they are in fact related.  Also, I assume if 50% of the respondents supported 1x/week collection, then 50% were opposed to it.  It would seem to me that there ought to be some community debate about an issue that appears to be pretty controversial.  Appreciate your thoughts.

By Garbage yes Gazebo no on 10/08/2010 at 4:26 pm

How about not building the gazebo, changing the garbage pickup to once a week and we saved $400K. People are complaining that $36 per household is not much, but saving on these 2 proposals is already $72/household. Still not much - but my question is this - how many more $200K/year saving opportunities are there? Why can’t the town board look at other options to save money and maybe our taxes can remain flat for a few years, until the economy picks up again?

By Saving Money on 10/08/2010 at 5:44 pm

I have once per week garbage pick-up at my other house in California.  The garbage begins to smell after a day or two.  And the community gives us enormous bins to use that close securely.  They also pick-up yard waste and recyclables on the same day each week.  I strongly object to this once a week plan.  Let’s recycle paper and plastic not bad ideas!

By It stinks on 10/08/2010 at 6:42 pm

Supervisor Gerrard stated that certain towns including “Armonk” pickup garbage only once a week. Armonk is not a town it is a hamlet within the TOWN of NORTH CASTLE, which includes “North White Plains”. If anyone is interested in what once a week garbage collection looks like I suggest one takes a ride through “North White Plains” the night before garbage collection day.

By Jason Fields on 10/08/2010 at 7:59 pm

To many of you - once a week garbage pickup - who appointed this town board to take a vote without asking residents what they want.  Did they vote or was this again supposed to be a proposal?  Do the math.  Saving less than 70 cents per week to put up with the problems from animals and flying cardboard.  Many of us are on septic tanks and cannot put garbage down the drain.  Ever ridden behind a garbage truck this past summer?  Twice a week and the odor is enough to knock you out.  Having our homes small for this insane idea is off the walls.  Since garbage is a separate line item-a Special District-it does nothing to take down the overall town line on our tax bills.  A better idea would be for the town board to stop spending money on the hamlet projects for a year or two.  That could save all of us over $1,000,000.  For some insane reason they give themselves $500,00 to spend per year and keep paying consultants fees to come up with information to put their ideas down on paper.  FOIL how much the town has spent to date and you will be surprised at where our tax dollars are truly going.

By NJH on 10/08/2010 at 8:22 pm

Problem solved, just leave a little early for the train, and dump the second days garbage into one of the many dumpsters that have been placed behind Duncan Donuts. After all thats what they did in Yonkers.

BTW I thought garbage dumpsters are supposed to be hidden from view, perhaps the SAB can look into this.

By Jason Fields on 10/08/2010 at 8:59 pm

@to Richard Goldsmith….“What does gazebo have to do with garbage pickup”? You ask that question and you are on the Towns Sustainability Advisory Board? Our taxes pay for both. We are being told we will be going to once a week pick-up and that will save $200k. The gazebo, for some incredible and unbelivable reason, will cost $200k. Let’s see if my college education can help us here….save $200k get rid of gazebo or find one for $50k and keep garbage pickup as is. DUUHHH…Town Board, SAB, they all seem lacking common sense.

By RESIDENT on 10/09/2010 at 9:14 am

Taking numbers from the article, two pickups per week plus separate recycling (a total of THREE truck runs) costs $520 per household, and reducing this to ONE combined pickup would cost $484 for a savings of $36. 

What great negotiators we have at Town Hall!

By Pragmatist on 10/09/2010 at 11:58 am

Save the money that’s final!!! Every other town has one pick up and there is no garbage in the streets, how can this be done, lets have focus groups about it. God can someone stop with the coyotes and all this blubbering nonsense. Thank you New Castle for making a fiscally responsible decision. Keep looking for more savings. Can’t most of you move to California it seems like it suits you more.

By Resident Sick of the Bleeding Heart BS on 10/09/2010 at 11:40 pm

It would appear that most residents want to keep the current garbage collection as is.  Can we get this decision reversed?  How about petitioning the Town Board to do just that! 

A question for The Sustainability Advisory Board:  How does one endure the unending unbearable pervasive raw garbage stentch and the unwanted insects and critters the garbage will attract while reposing in our garages awaiting a once a week pickup?

By Petition the Town Board on 10/10/2010 at 2:58 am

to Resident sick of the Bleeding Heart BS:  where do you live and can you donate some garbage cans for my chicken bones and other waste I don’t want hanging around?  I won’t complain about taxes as long as I get great schools for our kids, and good community services.

By Leslie on 10/10/2010 at 7:25 am

What I’m hearing is a lot of alarm over how to handle garbage, as though we’re passive victims of our own household output.  How can garbage stink if it’s been bagged and put in a garbage can—with a top on it?  Clearly we need some remedial garbage-handling lessons.

And as for wild animals feasting, I think it’s very rude—and not great to look at—to neighbors to put out garbage the day or night before pick up. For one another’s sake I think we have a duty to haul it to the curb THE MORNING OF PICK UP.  This ALSO solves the problem of night critters messing with it.  THAT’s when it happens, at night, over those 8 or 10 hours it stands out there, tempting them.

By Willing to learn on 10/10/2010 at 9:07 am

fiscally responsible decision - $36 saving when we all pay HUGE AMOUNTS of taxes - that’s a very funny way of looking at fiscally responsible decisions.  show me the real money to save on taxes.  This is a ridiculous amount of money - I’m sure a bunch of us would be happy to give $36 to the few who think this is a reasonable way to save real money to keep 2x week collection.

By Leslie on 10/10/2010 at 9:47 am

We do know how to handle garbage.  They are starting this when the weather gets hotter in April and through the Summer.  We’re just having problems with very poor decision making by the Town Board.  I urge each and every Board member who voted against twice per week garbage pick-up to reconsider.  This is an awful decision which detracts from the quality of life in town.

By Excuse me? on 10/10/2010 at 11:44 am

To Willing to learn:  Your suggestion of remedial garbage-handling lessons is an excellent idea.  However, bagged and tied garbage placed in a lidded secure garbage container still stinks after several days, especially during hot humid weather.  All well and good to get the garbage out the day of pickup but for some of us seniors managing to drag our containers out before 7a.m., especially on snowy, icy days, poses a bit of a problem.  Rather than consider myself a victim of my own household output, I consider myself a victim of a town with too many sub-boards ill-advising the Town Board.

By Petition the Town Board on 10/10/2010 at 11:52 am

Its disturbing to read the self centered and uninformed comments from this vocal minority in my community.
Here’s a quick reminder for all residents of the town of New Castle: When you throw something out, there really is no AWAY.  Landfills are full up, gas prices will continue to rise as cheap easy fossil fuels become a thing of the past. The cost of getting rid of your garbage will continue to rise both economically and environmentally.

Do you care at all about the mess you are leaving for your children and grandchildren to clean up in the future?
First and foremost, we need to reduce our waste stream. Over 40% of New Castle residents don’t recycle. Even those who do recycle don’t really know the extent to which they could be recycling.

Its safe to say even less New Castle residents compost their leaves and kitchen waste. This simple strategy keeps waste that creates methane out of the wastestream and creates a very useful soil amendment.

What will you say to your grandchildren when they ask you why you didn’t do more to protect our environment? Perhaps its time to think beyond your own household and realize that we are all in this together and that there is no Planet B

By Wake Up Chappy on 10/10/2010 at 1:41 pm

A comment for the SAB poster: The Town Board and other persons making determinations regarding the disbursement of taxpayer’s money need to revisit the decision to spend $200,000 on a gazebo when we have dangerous and hazardous sidewalks in the Town. One example is the awful sidewalk located in the area of Don Emilio at Lobo’s Cafe restaurant. Apparently the decision makers in this Town are setting priorities that are not in the best interests of the Town residents; safe sidewalks are far more important than a gazebo. In reference to the once a week refuse collection, I strongly oppose this decision without a referendum placed on the ballot on election day. Look at the macro economics of the Town budget and do the math, the savings for once a week refuse collection is minuscule when compared to the inconvenience; equal and larger savings can be realized by reducing and eliminating other wasteful spending noted in comments made by other posters in this discussion thread.

By Why no referendum on 10/10/2010 at 1:58 pm

My first thought was, “Hey Town Hall: Here’s my check for $36. Give us back our second pick-up!” My next thought was that $36 is probably the value of the food I just transferred from my refrigerator to the garbage can. Leftovers (from a too-big roast) carefully wrapped but left untouched in favor of something new, a surplus of once-lovely now-wilting produce that didn’t make it into our salads last week.  Let’s not forget what it is we want hauled away—waste. The excess of which is nothing to brag about. A weekly pick-up may force us to be more mindful about our consumer habits and smarts.

By think about it on 10/10/2010 at 2:20 pm

“Besides the money saved going to once a week pickup is the equivalent of getting 600 cars off the road.”  By Richard Goldsmith on 10/08/2010 at 4:07 pm

Yeah, that follows.

By Blackacre on 10/10/2010 at 4:12 pm

Once a garbage pickup is great!! I’d certainly rather spend money on a NEW gazebo than on someone picking up MY garbage.  With once a week pick-up maybe I’ll finally get a handle on just how much garbage my house makes.  And I’ll try to start to do the responsible thing as a citizen of the world and try to produce less garbage!

By Rose Cohen on 10/10/2010 at 6:57 pm

Think of it, for $36 a year, $3 a month, 75 cents a week per residence, the Town Board has issued its decree ordering garbage pickup to be cut in half.  Has the Chappaqua Crossing situation driven Board members bonkers?  Or is this just a case of revenge against residents who are in the process of destroying their “ram-it-thru” projected Town partnership with Summit Greenfield?

What we have now in Chappaqua is a Town Board, composed of members who ran unopposed, who apparently are exercising (and enjoying) their power to rough ride over the demands of their constituents who elected them.  What are they reading before each meeting, “Chairman Mao’s Little Red Book?”

Some would say that it is a benefit to a community for an elite few to bestow benevolence on their constituents since those few know so much better.  However, there are others who would call it tyranny.

I’m afraid that it is tyranny that has entered “on little cat feet,” into the formerly sleepy hamlet of Chappaqua. I now see how abuse of power does not only occur on the world stage but how it can appear in microcosm.

By History Buff on 10/10/2010 at 7:21 pm

When a governmental body, small or large, no longer heeds their constituents or the democratic will (especially when that will has an informed and rational basis), it is time to move on.

When their actions defy logic or facts, it is time to move on.

When what is happening with the New Castle town board happens in a jury, we call it a runaway jury, because they defy all logic and evidence and nullify the law.

The town board is a runaway board.  Isn’t it time to recall and replace them.

The proof that they are not adhering to their pledge to the citizens of this town, is that the recused members had to be forced to leave; left to their own devices they sat for years improperly influencing the Summit/Greenfield application decision. They would still be there if there were no outcry.

The Supervisor and Town Counsel did nothing and, even worse, resisted doing their duty and taking the appropriate action.

We should have an interim election, suspend all decisions, and ask the board to graciously resign.

By The Last Straw: Resign Now on 10/10/2010 at 7:48 pm

I travel quite a bit.  I’ll have to leave the bins out all week with the once a week collection plan or the Garbage will not get picked up.  What an inconvenience to me and an eyesore to my neighbors.

By Horrible for people who travel on 10/11/2010 at 5:54 am

to BS resident, every other town has one pickup, seriously? can you provide some data on that or is that just off the top of your head, just curious. perhaps if our town residents ALL had access to sewers, there wouldn’t be such a problem. also, about the blubbering coyote nonsense, ever have a coyote in your yard? have young kids? if so, you might know it’s not nonsense. and i am wondering if you are congratulating the town for its fiscal responsibility while sitting alone under the $200k+ gazebo… just curious.

By eg on 10/11/2010 at 7:57 am

I bag my trash in odor blocking kitchen trash bags. My household does not create a particularly large amount of trash. I recycle responsibly. I hate the idea of once a week pick up. Trash stinks in your trash can no matter how carefully it is bagged. I see trash cans put out the night before in my immediate neighborhood and it is reasonable to expect that residents will be even more likely to get the trash out of their garages as soon as possible when they have to store so much of it.

This will create a lot of mess in my opinion. I could not care less about the gazebo. I care greatly about a clean neighborhood and sanitary conditions. To those of you who support once a week pick up…put your trash out once a week. No one is stopping you. We pay a lot of taxes. Spend them responsibly. Reverse this decision please.

By egl on 10/11/2010 at 9:05 am

Lets see if they have the COURAGE to Print THIS…

It is simple people VOTE OUT THE CURRENT TOWN BOARD. GET RID of the CURRENT ADMINISTRATOR AND DEPUTY ADMINISTRATOR. START FRESH….Get a new board of people who care about the people…..Make the changes that are necessary to bring back your Town to the way it use to be….

Justice Seeker….....

By Justice Seeker on 10/11/2010 at 9:41 am

Also have to feel sorry for the people who collect garbage in the summer months when garbage is left in the can for the week.  Smelly and stinky garbage for them to put in their trucks.  That should also be a consideration from a health standpoint.  Have we ever smelled that garbage - it’s disgusting.

By Leslie on 10/11/2010 at 11:07 am

Tyranny? Courage? Justice? Are we talking about a life or death issue here or the frequency of our GARBAGE pick up. The level of drama in this town continues to amuse. I’m beginning to think SG is the devil after reading the CC posts—very amusing.

By Awed on 10/11/2010 at 2:53 pm

Boo Hooo… Learn to adjust. Go to private trash pickup like the Town of Bedford, then you can pay yourself for every hour pickup if you want. As we watch our state follow California off a cliff can’t you selfish lazy people understand YOU HAVE TO STOP SPENDING!!!!
OMG the world will come to an end, my trash pail is all filled up with my smelly chicken bones and latte cups, Please. While our seniors cant afford to live here anymore, you people have mixed up priorities.

By Boo Hooo on 10/11/2010 at 6:42 pm

I would think the town could put in more gazebos at least three more around town so everyone can enjoy. To make it more efficient we should have one dumpster on every road to lessen the drive time and save fuel. The truck only has to stop once per street and we just toss our trash in as we drive by.

By Gazebos For All on 10/11/2010 at 6:54 pm

After reading all your remarks I must say you people are not the sharpest. It scares me to think you know nothing of what you speak and you all most likely have degrees scary. It is an embarrassment to think you voted in the town board and then when they dictate to you and take your freedom away you complain. Children petty children.
Maybe if you all cry to Hilary she can save you, oops she’s moving out is it anything you’ve done.

By And You May Be Living Near Me on 10/11/2010 at 7:09 pm

don’t criticize unless you’ve got an alternative plan.  could the town put a dumpster at the train station?  i’d be willing to bring the trash there every morning.  hey, let’s put more at all the schools, churches and grocery stores. 

amazing that the savings is so little.  50% reduction in services and a 7% savings.  I hope the town doesn’t apply this new rule in other instances.

By new ideas on 10/12/2010 at 7:10 am

We have been putting out our garbage once weekly for the past 3 years and have no issue with the town doing once weekly collections. Our recycling is always a far greater portion of our collection than the ‘trash’. Recycling and composting help us to ‘green’ our community and be responsible citizens of the world. I do believe, however that it should reflect a greater saving to rate payers than what is being proposed.

By Clean up your act on 10/12/2010 at 7:23 am

I agree with you, Boo Hooo. We should stop spending on unnecessary things at the local, state, and federal levels. I would bet most people want the infrastructure maintained (e.g. road repair and plowing, sidewalks, trash pick up etc.). Things like gazebos, for example, seem extraneous. Perhaps the many vehicles provided to county and local workers could be reduced (perhaps they could carpool to reduce emissions).

As far as preserving the environment, as one commenter stresses, I don’t think there will be less trash. I think it will just all go out on one day. Can the carting company handle it? Or will we end up like Yonkers waiting two or more weeks for our trash to get picked up because the trucks only made it through part of the route?

I am not a child, by the way, nor am I a wasteful person. I don’t believe that once a week garbage collection is going to save the planet.  Or the town budget. But I do think that everyone putting out several cans of garbage the night before pick up will be a mess (and many will do this). I also believe we will see increased animal activity. Coyotes and racoons carry rabies. Is this what we want to bring close to our homes?

I moved here because of the school system and because it is beautiful. Between this and Chappaqua Crossing looks like I might lose both.

By egl on 10/12/2010 at 7:49 am

My concern with once a week pick up is for households like mine which are not on the sewer system and have obeyed the law not to have a disposal on a septic. Summer will be horrible with wet garbage i.e. non-recyclables sitting and smelling. Also some of us live in small houses where extra garbage cans will be difficult to store which makes them more vulnerable to animals.

By long time resident on 10/12/2010 at 9:10 am

Ask anyone who has been trying to sell their house in Chappaqua (or anywhere else).  After a extreme and sustained buyer’s market which shows no end in sight, towns would do well to be careful how they slash quality of life services.  Not sure if anyone has noticed, but the “schools, schools, schools” battle cry of the late nineties / early 2000s, which caused families (like mine) to uproot and move to Chappaqua against all odds, are GONE.

Last year when I spouted my typical B.S. to a friend I left behind in my hometown when I moved here in 2000, “Greeley achieved #51 in the top high schools,” she flattened me with, “Really?  Yonkers was #41.”  Of course we know most of these rankings are meaningless, but remember the cupholder/car syndrome.

Frankly, I deserved it.  I’ve been flogging that dead horse for years as a reason for paying $28,000 a year taxes compared to their $10,000.  Combine that with the annual power outage of at least five days in dead of winter with not a police car, ConEd employee or other service in sight—to my knowledge, no emergency help for seniors or the infirm at their homes—no leaf pickup or other services other towns enjoy, and honestly, just kill me now.

Now I’m going to have a house and garage filled with filthy garbage, and God forbid for some reason I miss that weekly pick up?  Can someone remind me what the selling point of coming to Chappaqua is again?  Besides the train commute?

By TM on 10/12/2010 at 10:55 am

I bought a heavy-duty garbage can from the Recycling Center.  It rolls quite easily and has a raccoon proof hinged lid.  More than enough room for a week’s worth of garbage (even when shared with our neighbor.)  Once a week is enough - small price to pay to be a little greener.

By Nancy King on 10/12/2010 at 2:09 pm

No one has addressed the most important issue—property values.  Who is going to want to pay top dollar for a house that has piles of garbage sitting around stinking for a week, attracting squirrels, raccoons, coyotes, and, eventually, bears?

By Oscar Bonavena on 10/12/2010 at 2:50 pm

Twice a week garbage pick-up is well worth the expenditure.  In fact lets consider weekly yard waste pick-up year round as well.  My New Castle yard waste bags have been out there forever. 

$36 even $72 per year is cheap for the twice weekly refuse pick-up service.  This is not a ‘green’ issue since we recycle what we can anyway.  Its all about sanitation, convenience and taxes.  This is one tax I’m glad to pay.  Its a fee for service I actually use.

By John Ehrlich on 10/12/2010 at 3:22 pm

I have to respectfully disagree with every post declaring that once a week pick up will provide an environmental benefit. We will simply be storing our garbage for more days before it gets put out. I recycle everything possible and I still have a decent amount of trash.

I also have my doubts about an animal proof trash can. Trash cans can be tipped over and forced open, even with hinges and latches (ask my dog about our kitchen trash bin complete with locking lid). I would certainly not store trash outdoors in one. 

Let’s also hope there aren’t too many oversights like the one that left my whole container of plastic and glass recyclables at the curb today instead of being picked up. Just a mistake I was told, but now I get to keep it until next week. If it was household trash in a once a week situation that would create some difficulty.

I think the comments warning us about our property values are wise advice. Take away services and the neighborhood is not so enticing anymore.

By egl on 10/12/2010 at 8:20 pm

The environmental benefit is by having TRUCKS drive 1 fewer time a week.  Isn’t that obvious? And to think, you all are the people that vote in elections.  The lack of common sense is really upsetting. Learn to adjust. Simple and plain.  Y’all are babies if you can’t handle this awesome, cost-conscious and environmental plan.  Bravo Sustainability Advisory Board.  Bravo Town Board.  Bravo Town Supervisor.  Hell, Bravo Gazebo.  Finally some legitimate progress.

By DUH on 10/14/2010 at 9:18 pm

The “big” $36 will go to the cost of another garbage pail to house my trash.  There is really no cost benefit here at all. The environmental factor is not big enough here, sorry.

By Andrea on 10/15/2010 at 8:57 am

This has got to be one of the dumbest ideas ever. Nice - chicken and fish in the garbage cans in the garage from May - September, stinking for almost 1 week in hot humid weather.
Can’t wait.

Well, this frustrated resident is planning on driving all odoriferous bags of garbage to town on the way to work and dropping said bag in one of the TOWN GARBAGE PAILS - in front of the Library, in front of Town Hall, in front of Starbucks… you get the drift

By Frustrated resident on 10/15/2010 at 9:37 am

please sign the petition to restore the twice weekly garbage collection at the following link:

By eg on 10/18/2010 at 8:54 pm

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