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Vandalism, Transfer Site Closure Discussed at FNSB Assembly

Garbage is the subject of a worksession tonight for the Fairbanks North Star Borough Assembly. Specifically, garbage at the transfer sites. 

Municipal garbage pick-up is not included in services outside the city limits of Fairbanks, and many residents outside the city or in the city of North Pole opt not to subscribe to private trash pick-up companies. Instead, they haul their own trash to the borough landfill on Sanduri Road, or take it to one of 13 transfer sites where they load their own trash into Dumpsters.

Until a few days ago, there were 15 transfer sites, but the borough opted to close the two least-used ones because of complaints and costs. The 30-mile Richardson Highway site and the Dale Road transfer site were closed January 31. The Moose Creek transfer site was also targeted for closure in January, but the administration extended the opening in response to residents saying they needed the service.

The Borough Assembly is having a worksession tonight to get a status report on the transfer site conditions, and talk about security concerns. They will hear a report from the Solid Waste Division and have a question and answer period.

In the past the borough has tried to balance safety with access to the sites. The division tried changing the hours the transfer sites are open to reduce vandalism, and has hired paid attendants to monitor the sites to keep users from, well, trashing the place.

Processing garbage from the transfer sites costs the Fairbanks North Star Borough about 8 million dollars every year.

Every year, 100 thousand tons of garbage goes into the solid waste facility on Sanduri Road. 44 percent of that comes from the transfer sites. An analysis of how heavily each site is used is in the Solid Waste Division’s annual report on the division’s website.

Tonight’s worksession begins right after the Finance Committee meeting, which starts at 5:30 p.m.