Cowichan News Leader

CVRD offering totes for all types

The CVRD’s solid-waste superintendent Jason Adair shows tote’s sturdy wheels allowing residents to push totes along driveways, grass or gravel for easy curbside pickup. - Peter W. Rusland
The CVRD’s solid-waste superintendent Jason Adair shows tote’s sturdy wheels allowing residents to push totes along driveways, grass or gravel for easy curbside pickup.
— image credit: Peter W. Rusland

Toting trash to the curb could be a lot easier come June.

That’s when many rural-area Cowichanians will likely have received free garbage and recyclable totes, equipped with big sturdy wheels, delivered free to their homes — if a proposed regional trash and recycling plan starts.

Some residents are objecting to the plan, saying it won’t be suited to rural needs.

“Easy-roll totes will work fine in the city where there are smooth, level paved driveways leading to neat street-side curbs. Out here, not so much,” Anne Wilkinson wrote in a letter to the News Leader Pictorial. “Can you visualize a small woman in her late eighties trying to push one of these up her gravel driveway?

But Jason Adair, CVRD’s solid-waste superintendent, is planning for the new waste system, assuring folks they will they can basically get a sturdy tote in a size that fits their needs.

“They’re very easy to manoeuvre. They come with 10-inch, heavy-duty rubber wheels,” he said of the CVRD’s 17,000 totes of the type now used in other rural communities across the continent.

Adair was especially aware some folks have long, maybe gravel, driveways that must be navigated to lug trash and yellow-bagged recyclables to the roadside for pickup.

“These wheels are designed to handle that type of terrain,” he said.

Those who currently heft their trash and recyclables to their pickup point in a vehicle should be able to continue that practice using their new totes.

Adair said the system is supposed to adjust to residents’ needs, not cram them into a strict tote-by-rote system.

By June 1, 12,000 residences will get a standard-size 140- to 160-litre trash tote and/or a 240-litre recyclables tote, but they can pre-order a tote in another size if they want.

Models of the three totes, spanning 80- to 360-litres, are on view at the Bings Creek recycling depot. Contact the CVRD to arrange for alternate sizes.

Homes in all regional areas now receive recycling pickup every other week “and that will stay the same,” Adair said, noting yellow recycling bags will be replaced by totes.

“Areas D, E, F, G and I, get regional trash pickup now every other week, and that will stay same,” he explained of those homes to get garbage totes.

Areas A, B, C, and H get private trash hauling now. That’ll be status quo unless residents demand their area director get them public hauling, then they’ll receive trash totes.

Objectors to the Cowichan Valley Regional District’s $1.8-million public hauling drive have until Monday to gain 2,550 names on official forms to force a referendum about the proposal.

Resident Bill Dumont is spearheading an effort to collect the necessary signatures, however, neither he, nor the CVRD provided any information in response to requests on how well the campaign was going.

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