Effective December 1, 2020, the City of El Paso Environmental Services Department will temporarily suspend curbside recycling collections until further notice due to staffing shortages caused by Covid-19.
Collections of gray trash bins, and only gray bins, will continue as scheduled.
“Unfortunately, our workforce has been hit hard by the pandemic. We must temporarily scale back some operations to ensure that we can continue to perform our essential solid waste services, which are operating the landfill and collection of household trash. During these uncertain times, we are asking our customers for their understanding and cooperation by putting their blue bins away as we work to address these staffing shortages,” said Ellen Smyth, Environmental Services Department Managing Director.
The department provides nearly 200,000 homes with curbside trash and recycling collections. The monthly service fee charged to customers is solely for emptying gray bins. Customers are not charged a monthly fee for recycling collection services.
Customers will still be able to take recyclables to a drop-off site, please see tips below.
Texas law requires residential trash be collected at least once weekly.
On a daily basis, approximately 80 drivers are needed to collect both trash and recyclables efficiently, but recently sickness, and vacancies have left the department more than 20 drivers short on any given work day.
VIRTUAL TOWN HALLS
To inform customers about their solid waste disposal options during this period, Environmental Services will host a series of virtual town hall sessions on:
- Nov. 24, 2020 at 5:30 p.m. To participate visit https://bit.ly/3f81lRy or dial the toll free number 1 (833) 664-9267 (and enter conference id # 308964197)
- Dec. 1, 2020 at 5:30 p.m. To participate visit https://bit.ly/3f81lRy or dial the toll free number 1 (833) 664-9267 (and enter conference id # 308964197)
- Dec. 8, 2020 at 5:30 p.m. To participate visit https://bit.ly/3f81lRy or dial the toll free number 1 (833) 664-9267 (and enter conference id # 308964197)
TIPS FOR MANAGING HOUSEHOLD WASTE DURING THIS PERIOD
- You may place materials (recyclables and trash) in the gray bin for weekly collection. Recyclables will be landfilled, not recycled.
- If you are able, store recyclable material until the recycling program resumes.
- If you are able, take recyclable material to a drop-off site. (Locations below). Materials should be loose when placed in the bins at the sites. No bagged material will be accepted.
- Contact us to schedule a special collection for extra household trash or bulk items. Rates start at $35. (Contact info below)
The five drop-off sites, officially known as Citizen Collection Stations, accept extra household trash, recyclables and bulky items.
In early November, the department scaled back some of its drop-off site operations due to the pandemic’s impact on staffing. All sites will resume normal operations Dec. 1, 2020 to assist customers during this period of suspended recycling collections.
The sites will open 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. Tuesday through Saturday, and are located at 2492 Harrison, 1034 Pendale, 4501 Hondo Pass, 3510 Confederate, and 121 Atlantic.
OPT-IN RECYCLING PROGRAM SUSPENDED
The temporary suspension of curbside recycling will also result in the temporary interruption of the Opt-In Recycling Program.
The Opt-In program allows new customers to choose whether they want to receive curbside recycling services. Those who opt-in to the program are provided with a blue bin once they successfully complete an online course, which highlights items accepted in the recycling program.
FOR MORE INFORMATION
Customers may contact the Environmental Services Department by dialing (915) 212-6000, chatting with us online, or by downloading the free ESD Works for Me App.