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2015 Solid Waste Rates

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2016 Solid Waste Rates

The City of San Carlos City Council considered the 2016 solid waste rates at the January 11, 2016 City Council Meeting.  

The City of San Carlos did not increase rates for 2016 scheduled and unscheduled services, which include weekly collection of solid waste and recyclables. 

The City of San Carlos is continuing the Solid Waste Rate Reduction Program, offering a 10% discount on monthly trash bills. 

For more information, please follow the links below:

How Rates are Set
Unscheduled Services (PDF  185 KB).
General Information on Garbage Collection
Recology San Mateo County
Contact Us

How Rates are Set
The City of San Carlos is a part of the South Bayside Waste Management Authority (SBWMA). The SBWMA is comprised of twelve local agencies including the Atherton, Belmont, Burlingame, East Palo Alto, Foster City, Hillsborough, Menlo Park, San Mateo, County of San Mateo, and the West Bay Sanitary District. The SBWMA assists each member agency in managing their franchise agreement with contracted waste hauler, Recology.

Each year, Recology is required to submit a compensation application. The compensation application details all of the collection cost, disposal expenses at Shoreway Environmental Center, and the City’s franchise and other fees. The rate application includes an estimate of the revenue that is required to pay for collection services in the coming year.  The difference between the revenue and the projected revenue requirement is used to determine the recommended rate adjustments needed by each agency to pay for these services as of January 1st of each year.

Due to the estimated revenue that will be generated in 2016, there is no increase for scheduled and unscheduled services.

Actual Cost for Garbage Collection
Due to many customers down-sizing to smaller cart sizes thereby reducing trash to the landfill and increasing recycling and composting, and a current pricing structure that does not fully cover costs, San Carlos residential service continues to bring in less revenue than the actual cost for collection services. This occurs because the number of customers with smaller cart sizes continues to increase each year, while the number of customers with accounts that subsidize these services continue to decrease.

As the City moves towards cart cost alignment it will result in price increases for customers with 20 gallon and 32 gallon carts and price decreases for customers with 64 gallon and 96 gallon carts.  Since the majority of our customer base uses the smaller cart sizes, this will increase the amount of revenue generated. This surplus revenue will ultimately need to be balanced by making adjustments to both the remaining residential (those with larger cart sizes) and commercial account holders.

The 2016 residential cart subsidy is as follows:

Cart Size

Current Number of Accounts

Current Rate Per Month

Actual Contractor Cost Per Month

Difference Per Month

20 Gallon





32 Gallon





64 Gallon





96 Gallon





Rate Protest Process
The rate protest process has ended for 2015 Solid Waste Rates.

For future reference:

If you wish to file a written protest, please send a letter in a sealed envelope addressed to Solid Waste Rates, City Clerk, City of San Carlos, 600 Elm Street, San Carlos, CA 94070.  Your letter must identify the real property you own by street address and assessor’s parcel number (located on the front of the notice). Your letter must be legibly signed by any one of the current property owners.  Your name should be set forth as it appears on your tax bill. 

In order to be considered for 2016 Solid Waste Rates protest, the City of San Carlos must receive your letter at City Hall by 5:00 p.m. on December 14, 2015 (date of 2016 Solid Waste Rate public hearing), or it must be presented at the City Council meeting on December 14, 2015 prior to the close of the public hearing on the matter.

Any person interested, including all collection customers of the City of San Carlos, may appear at the public hearing and be heard on any matter related to the proposed rates.

Contact Us
If you have questions, comments or concerns about the proposed 2015 Solid Waste Rates, please contact the City of San Carlos Public Works Department at (650) 802-4194.