Waste haulers can now offer optional biweekly recycling pickup

Waste haulers can now offer optional biweekly recycling pickup
Posted on 05/12/2021

The Lenexa City Council has approved code amendments that allow solid waste haulers to offer both weekly and biweekly recycling collection to customers. 

An ordinance amending several sections of the Lenexa City Code regarding solid waste was approved at the May 18 City Council meeting. The code changes require that all licensed waste haulers offer customers weekly recycling pickup, but also allows them to offer the option to collect recycling every other week.

The full staff report and approved ordinance are available in the May 18 City Council packet.

For the last several months, Lenexa City staff have been researching and considering a request from Waste Management to allow biweekly recycling collection. At the time, the City required recycling to be collected at least weekly.

Waste Management is the largest local solid waste hauler and the owner/operator of the Johnson County landfill and the recycling materials recovery facility. They said their request was made due to changes in the recycling market that have made it more expensive to process recycling and exponentially more difficult to sell recycled materials for reuse. In particular, China and several other countries which purchase large amounts of recyclable materials from the U.S. recently imposed significantly stricter contamination rates for imported recyclables.

Of the five licensed haulers in Lenexa who responded to a City survey, all said they've faced similar challenges.

The City also reached out to representatives of other cities (most of which allow biweekly recycling collection), studied the state of the recycling market and offered a survey to residents. Of the 2,400 residents who responded, just over half said that biweekly recycling pickup would not meet their household needs. 

Based on this collective feedback, staff concluded that it would be appropriate to continue requiring weekly recycling pickup while allowing biweekly collection as an option for customers.

According to the City's hauler survey results, not all solid waste providers plan to offer the option to have recycling picked up every other week. Residents are encouraged to shop around for the provider that best fits their needs.

If you have questions about rate changes, cart size or options for biweekly service, please contact your waste hauler directly. You'll find contact information for all licensed Lenexa waste haulers on our Resident Resources page

Updated May 19, 2021