San Francisco Sets New Refuse Rates

For Immediate Release
June 27, 2006
Contact: Christine Falvey
Tel: (415) 554-6920


San Francisco Sets New Refuse Rates

San Francisco, Ca – The Department of Public Works (DPW) announced today that residential garbage rates will increase from 19.08 per month to $22.29 on July 1, 2006 and will increase gradually to $24.33 by 2011.

The rate, based on once-a-week residential collection of a single 32-gallon black can, reflects a 27 percent increase over the next five years. An annual cost of living adjustment formula was also approved that will adjust rates based on inflation over that same time period. There will continue to be no charge for blue recycling and green yard and food waste collection.

Golden Gate Disposal and Recycling Company and Sunset Scavenger Company requested the increase to offset operating cost increases, such as labor, health care and pension costs.

Under the 1932 Refuse Collection and Disposal Initiative Ordinance, the City and County of San Francisco approves and sets residential garbage rates every five years. This year, a San Francisco Refuse Ratepayer Advocate was established to facilitate public participation in the rate setting process. A series of Public Works Director's Hearings, community workshops and Rate Board Hearings were held between November 2005 and May 2006 to review and analyze Sunset Scavenger and Golden Gate Recycling and Disposal companies' rate application, which had originally requested a 36 percent increase over five years.

DPW's analysis, evaluation and recommendation of the companies' requested increase, can be found at

As part of the rate increase application, the companies will be attempting more aggressive diversion programs to help the City reach its goal of diverting 75 percent of the garbage generated by city businesses, residents and visitors from the landfill by 2010. The companies will assist residents with Universal Waste Disposal, a new state law affecting disposal of electronic/computer equipment and extending bulky item collection to tenants, currently only offered to direct rate payers.

The rate setting process was staffed by DPW and the Department of the Environment.