Kitimat council eyeing residential cardboard ban

A residential cardboard ban would add to an existing commercial cardboard ban.

Kitimat Council is moving ahead on putting a residential cardboard ban at the landfill.

A similar ban is already in place for commercial cardboard and once the new bylaw comes in to effect homeowners will have to take their cardboard to either the KUTE depot or to the Kitimat Bottle Depot which is now a Multi Material BC (MMBC) contracted recycling depot.

MMBC’s recycling program went into effect earlier this year.

District of Kitimat staff told council that they recommended that they debate three readings of the bylaw at their July 7 public meeting, and then finalize the bylaw on July 21, due to the fact those meetings are televised and it would help to advertise the likely changes.

Mario Feldhoff said he was happy to see the process begin.

“This is good, I think this is an incremental change to our solid waste recycling that will incrementally ensure that we extend the life of our landfill,” he said. “I think the time has come for the residential cardboard ban. We started off with the business cardboard ban and a few businesses had some challenges with that but they’ve moved on, they’ve adapted and I think that those residents that are currently not recycling their cardboard they’ll find a way to do that in the future as well.”

There are potential budget impacts for this change. Most directly with advertising costs for public education, staff say in their report.

Also, KUTE, which receives grant funding from the District of Kitimat, has indicated if they become inudated with residential cardboard they might need another half-time employee.

That addition would cost $14,000 annually.

However because there are two depots in town that can take the material it is hard to forecast the burden to KUTE, staff note.

Kitimat will likely advertise a new cardboard ban with a brochure that will be distributed before a ban is implemented. Staff expect the brochure to cost the District $2,000.

No penalty for this proposed bylaw has been set at this time but may be discussed at next Monday’s meeting.

Staff had indicated the cardboard ban could fall under the municipal ticketing ability with a potential $75 for violations of the cardboard ban.

If council sticks with the staff’s recommendations the bylaw could go in to effect as early as September 1.

Public education would include factors such as residents’ need to keep cardboard dry, otherwise it is no longer able to be recycled.