BAKER, Fla., Sept. 23, 2021—Trash pickup rates are climbing in rural north Okaloosa County.
Adams Sanitation is raising its rates for its twice-weekly garbage pickup.
Optional recycling service rates are going up as well.
Effective with the November billing cycle, the standard rate for trash pickup increases to $29.50 a month and recycling increases to $7.50 per month.
These new rates will be reflected in the Oct. 15 bills.
“We have worked hard to hold the line on our prices and many of our Okaloosa customers have not seen a price increase in three years,” said Christopher Saul, chief marketing officer for Adams Sanitation. “Unfortunately, we are not able to keep prices flat for another year.”
The biggest cause for the price increase is dump fees, according to Saul.
Okaloosa County has increased its dump fees every year for the past three years. Those fees will increase another $1.25 per ton Oct. 1.
“While that may not seem like a lot, it’s increasing our annual dump fees significantly,” Saul said.
Also impacting fees are wage increases.
“We want to retain the very best people we can,” said Saul. “The best people need to be paid a competitive wage, otherwise they’ll leave.”
Competitive wages equates to better service and fewer issues and missed pickups, he said.
In addition to rising dump fee costs and competitive wages, equipment and fuel costs have increased as well.
“Costs for equipment and fuel have shot up in the last year,” said Saul. “A trash truck that cost $176,772 last year now costs $224,094, and fuel has gone up more than a dollar a gallon.”
Adams Sanitation changed hands October 2018. Rates increased $6.50 a month from $21 to $27.50 with the change in ownership.
With the increase came enhanced service, including appliance, bulk and yard pickup at no additional costs.
The biggest convenience was there was no more requirement to have all garbage bagged.
Adams’s optional recycle program began in July 2020.
However, due to a fire at the Emerald Coast Utilities Authority, the recycling program has been suspended. Pending parts delivery for the recycle plant, it may restart in October.
“ECUA has let us know they expect their facility to be back up and running by the middle of October,” said Saul.
Staff and Adams Sanitation news release