Mayor Tyer to roll trash totes out in series of neighborhood meetings


PITTSFIELD — Mayor Linda Tyer is taking trash totes to the streets this time.

Starting this week, Tyer is hosting a series of neighborhood meetings introducing residents to trash totes she proposes using in a new solid waste program.

Tyer's plan to relegate the city's trash pickup program to 45-gallon totes for trash and 96-gallon ones for recycling, with overflow bags costing $1 to $3 each, hit a wall earlier this month when the City Council referred the ordinance back to her for further work.

Councilors said they were inundated with calls from residents concerned about maneuvering the city-issued totes and were concerned about the $1.4 million upfront cost associated with the automated system.

Mayor Tyer and Finance Director Matt Kerwood put the plan forward with goals of reducing trash and associated disposal costs — which haulers told councilors are rising as landfills close — increasing the city's low recycling rate, reducing blight and mounting sanitary issues with curbside pickup. The city's Board of Health backed the plan, which promised to both address public health concerns and enforcement issues under the current system.

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During the series of meetings, Tyer and her staff will present the plan and give residents an opportunity to interact with the totes themselves.

The first session happens Wednesday, from 6 to 7:30 p.m. at Morningside Community School, 100 Burbank St.

Another will take place on Thursday from 1:30 to 3 p.m. at the Ralph J. Froio Senior Center, 330 North St.

The following week, there will be a session on Feb. 8 from 6 to 7:30 p.m. at Conte Community School, 200 West Union St. The last session will take place on Feb. 12 from 6 to 7:30 p.m. at Herberg Middle School, 501 Pomeroy Ave.

Reach Amanda Drane at, @amandadrane on Twitter or at 413-496-6296.


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