Honolulu residents one step closer to paying for trash pickup

Local News

Honolulu is the only county that doesn’t charge for trash pick-up.

Bill 13 was brought up by Mayor Kirk Caldwell last week as part of his $2.83 billion operating budget. 

The bill proposed a $5 monthly or $60 annual refuse fee for residences. He says it would generate about $5.5 million dollars a year. 

This isn’t the first time a trash fee has been brought up, and just like in the past, it was met with opposition from residents at the City Council hearings on Friday. 

The City Council has rejected the fee in the past, but today only one council member was fully against the idea.

“Every time it’s come up residents are in strong opposition,” said councilmember Heidi Tsuneyoshi (D) Mililani Mauka, Haleiwa, Sunset Beach, Kahaluu.  

She says it’s creating another fee for service that’s already included in resident’s real property tax.

Councilwoman Kymberly Pine agrees Tsuneyoshi but says bulky item pick up, which is also included in the bill, should be charged for.

“The bulky item issue, in my opinion, has been a complete failure and our communities have been littered with illegal dumping on a consistent basis,” Pine said. 

She said it sometimes takes the city a week or two to pick up the bulky items. 

Although Councilmember Pine is against a trash fee, she voted yes with strong reservation because she thinks residents should be charged for bulky item pick up.

Council members Ron Menor and Ikaika Anderson weren’t at Friday’s hearings. 

Last week, Mayor Caldwell did note that condo and apartment owners already pay for trash pick-up. 

The bill passed its first reading today and is expected to be up for discussion later this month.

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