Monday, September 20, 2010

Hazardous Waste Service Cut to Once a Month

Today the Department of Public Works -- DPW for short, a/k/a the Trash Folks -- sent out a brief, bland announcement:
Starting Saturday, October 2, once a month, residents may bring these items to the Ft. Totten Transfer Station, 4900 John F. McCormack Road, NE, the first Saturday of the month, except holidays, between 8 am and 3 pm.  The new schedule reflects a reduction in the Department's budget for FY 2011, which begins October 1.
Bulk items and compost:  This new schedule does not affect residents' ability to bring bulk items to Ft. Totten or pick up compost between March and October.   For these services, Ft. Totten will be open weekdays between 1 pm and 5 pm, and each Saturday, except holidays, between 8 am and 3 pm.
Directions to Ft. Totten:  Travel east on Irving Street, NW, turn left on Michigan Avenue, turn left on John F. McCormack Road, NE and continue to the end of the street.
Now here's what it actually means. DC used to allow citizens to bring their hazardous waste to the dump every Saturday, or about 52 times per year. Due to budget cuts this year, we're down to the first Saturday of each month, or 12 times a year. For the past few years, when you took your hazardous waste to the dump at Ft. Totten, there would be a short car line, and you'd be done in no time. Now you can expect the line to be four times longer. It's not DPW's fault that the budget was cut, but it would have been nice if the announcement had told you what the previous service was so that you'd know the practical impact of the new schedule and plan accordingly. For more information about the Ft. Totten Hazardous Waste Program, visit DPW's website.

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