Recycling, Organics, and Garbage Contract

Recology will become Mercer Island's new recycling/compost/garbage hauler starting on October 1, 2019.

Do you have questions about rates, services, or containers?

Residents should contact Recology's phonebank directly at 206-381-6980 (Mon-Fri: 7am-7pm, and Sat-Sun: 8am-5pm). Or visit the new Recology MI website.

The new contract will bring brand new curbside containers, new collection vehicles, and some new practices to Mercer Island, which has been served by Republic Services (aka Allied Waste) for several decades. Residents are receiving more information in the mail throughout the summer.

Recology will become Mercer Island's new recycling/compost/garbage hauler starting on October 1, 2019.

Do you have questions about rates, services, or containers?

Residents should contact Recology's phonebank directly at 206-381-6980 (Mon-Fri: 7am-7pm, and Sat-Sun: 8am-5pm). Or visit the new Recology MI website.

The new contract will bring brand new curbside containers, new collection vehicles, and some new practices to Mercer Island, which has been served by Republic Services (aka Allied Waste) for several decades. Residents are receiving more information in the mail throughout the summer.

  • Preparations Fully Underway for October 1 Transition

    17 days ago
    Curbside carts image

    With September just around the corner, preparations are intensifying for the switch from current hauler (Republic Services) to Recology on October 1. Here’s what you can expect in the coming month...

    For more information, visit recology.com/mercer-island, or call 206-381-6980


    1. New Curbside Cart Delivery Will Begin Sept 2

    • Residential customers will receive an automated call from Recology the day before their normal pick-up with instructions to leave carts out till 5pm throughout the month of September. Customers will not receive all of their new carts in the same week; it may take most of...

    With September just around the corner, preparations are intensifying for the switch from current hauler (Republic Services) to Recology on October 1. Here’s what you can expect in the coming month...

    For more information, visit recology.com/mercer-island, or call 206-381-6980


    1. New Curbside Cart Delivery Will Begin Sept 2

    • Residential customers will receive an automated call from Recology the day before their normal pick-up with instructions to leave carts out till 5pm throughout the month of September. Customers will not receive all of their new carts in the same week; it may take most of the month to complete the swap out. [Note: Republic Services will actually be emptying the new carts until the October 1 switchover to Recology].


    2. Welcome Packets Will Appear in Residential Mailboxes Starting Sept 3

    • This will explain in great detail how to use your new Recology service. Answer FAQ’s, etc. Recology’s call center will have a dedicated team of customer service specialists to answer Mercer Island calls


    3. Map of Recology Collection Days

    • This is now available online here. About 30% of households will have a new collection day due to new routing efficiencies. starting October 1.


    4. Modifying Your Number of Compost Carts

    • One of the biggest changes starting October 1 is that compost/yard waste will be collected every week (not every other week, like today). This means that many residents may be able to reduce the number of compost carts they need. [Note: extra volumes of yard waste, like seasonal leaves/grass, can always be set out in paper bags for a small fee]. A compost cart modification letter will be mailed to all residential accounts Sept 6
    • You can request online to modify your compost cart numbers today here (change will become effective October 1), or call 206-381-6980


    5. Multifamily and Commercial Accounts Will Receive Welcome Packets Mid-September

    • If you live in an apartment or condo building or own a business, Recology will contact your property manager to arrange a smooth transition, provide educational materials, explain service etc.

  • New Process Announced for Recology Private Roads Waiver (16 July)

    2 months ago
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    Last month, Recology sent a letter to all residents living on private roads and lanes, asking customers to certify that their roadway can support the weight of heavy-duty commercial collection vehicles, once the new contract starts in October. After receiving concerns about the waiver language from a number of residents, the City asked Recology to make some refinements to its protocols.

    As a result, Recology has determined it will not be requiring a waiver for all private roads. Instead, its field crews will conduct more detailed site-by-site assessments through late August and contact only those residents where it believes there...

    Last month, Recology sent a letter to all residents living on private roads and lanes, asking customers to certify that their roadway can support the weight of heavy-duty commercial collection vehicles, once the new contract starts in October. After receiving concerns about the waiver language from a number of residents, the City asked Recology to make some refinements to its protocols.

    As a result, Recology has determined it will not be requiring a waiver for all private roads. Instead, its field crews will conduct more detailed site-by-site assessments through late August and contact only those residents where it believes there is risk of probable road damage.

    If a resident is not contacted again about road damage, no private roads waiver will be required.

    The new, shorter list is expected to consist of several dozen roads only, and the affected residents will be asked to sign a revised waiver with language still under development, to be reviewed by the City Attorney. Waivers that have already been signed (approx. 200) will be returned to residents with information as to why. In some very tight access areas, Recology is also exploring using an additional, third type of collection vehicle that is approximately the size of a pickup truck.

    Recology continues to work on a "Welcome Packet" to Island residents which is expected to be mailed in mid-August, and its staff will update the City Council in person at an August 20 meeting. For routing efficiency, some residents will also be assigned a different collection day - this information is still being finalized and will be communicated in several ways. A community open house is currently planned for September at the Community and Event Center.

    Residents with questions about future service and solutions should call Recology at (206) 381-6980, or visit the Recology website.

  • An Update on Recology's Private Roads Waiver

    3 months ago
    Recology logo

    The City has been working closely with Recology to help clarify the language and reasoning behind a private roads waiver that was mailed to approximately 1900 residents several weeks ago in late June. Based on resident feedback received, Recology is refining the waiver and accompanying letter and will be sharing that information as early as the week of July 8.

    In the meantime, Recology continues to staff a phonebank just for Mercer Island and the City urges any customer with questions to call for more information or to discuss service needs. Recology is also eager to meet with residents...

    The City has been working closely with Recology to help clarify the language and reasoning behind a private roads waiver that was mailed to approximately 1900 residents several weeks ago in late June. Based on resident feedback received, Recology is refining the waiver and accompanying letter and will be sharing that information as early as the week of July 8.

    In the meantime, Recology continues to staff a phonebank just for Mercer Island and the City urges any customer with questions to call for more information or to discuss service needs. Recology is also eager to meet with residents onsite to discuss any access issues and the condition of private roads. Saturday appointments are available – please call them today at (206) 381-6980.

    In general, if a given address is being served today by a smaller Local Access Vehicle (LAV), it is *very likely* that Recology will choose to do the same, but route managers would like to gather additional information through discussion with affected customers.

    Many residents have asked how long a private roads waiver would be in effect – the answer: for the period during which the customer is serviced by Recology at the residence on the private road, but not longer than the duration of the main City contract with Recology, which is 10 years (October 1, 2019 – September 30, 2029).

    Others have wondered what protections exist for the customer: the main contract contains a number of provisions regarding negligence that are unaltered by the private roads waiver. Per the contract, Recology is responsible for protecting all public and private facilities, and is responsible for all other damage to property and person not covered by the waiver that is caused by its actions.

    The contract can be viewed here in the Document Library.

    The City will continue to convey residents’ concerns and looks forward to continued coordination on outreach messaging.

  • Recology Distributes Private Road Letter/Mailer

    3 months ago
    Private roads screenshot

    This week, Recology sent a letter to residents living on private roads, asking customers to certify that their road can support the weight of a heavy collection truck. Approximately 1900 Island households that use private roadways will be required to sign a Private Road Liability Waiver in order to allow drive-in access (see Document Library for copies of the Waiver and Private Roads Map). Note: Most houses that are served today by a smaller collection vehicle (due to narrow access, etc) will likely be served the same way by Recology.

    The City understands that this legal requirement is new...

    This week, Recology sent a letter to residents living on private roads, asking customers to certify that their road can support the weight of a heavy collection truck. Approximately 1900 Island households that use private roadways will be required to sign a Private Road Liability Waiver in order to allow drive-in access (see Document Library for copies of the Waiver and Private Roads Map). Note: Most houses that are served today by a smaller collection vehicle (due to narrow access, etc) will likely be served the same way by Recology.

    The City understands that this legal requirement is new to Mercer Island, but emphasizes that it is common in neighboring cities, and would have been required by any hauler under a new contract, even if the current contract with Republic Services had been renewed. Customers with questions should contact Recology directly at (206) 381-6980 to evaluate the feasibility of collection; there are other service options available if a signed waiver cannot be accomplished. Read a new FAQ on Private Road Waivers.


  • Recology Launches Mercer Island Website!

    4 months ago
    Recology postcard 21may2019

    During the week of May 20, all Island addresses were mailed a welcome postcard (see photo), alerting residents to the upcoming switch over to Recology as the Island's contracted hauler, starting Oct 1, 2019. The postcard also announced the launch of a custom website and phone number (206-381-6980). Other outreach materials will also be mailed or distributed in the coming months.

    During the week of May 20, all Island addresses were mailed a welcome postcard (see photo), alerting residents to the upcoming switch over to Recology as the Island's contracted hauler, starting Oct 1, 2019. The postcard also announced the launch of a custom website and phone number (206-381-6980). Other outreach materials will also be mailed or distributed in the coming months.

  • City Council Selects Recology as New Recycling/Compost/Garbage Hauler

    3 months ago
    In December 2018, the City Council approved a new 10-year solid waste collection contract with Recology. The company currently serves many of Mercer Island's neighbors, including: Bothell, Burien, Carnation, Des Moines, Issaquah, Maple Valley, SeaTac, Seattle, Shoreline, and also Seattle Public Schools.

    The proposal process drew 4 applicants, and Recology was chosen based on its commitment to customer service, innovative outreach and education programs, and best rates, among other factors.

    Compared to the next best proposal (from current hauler Republic), on average, rates would increase for the typical residential customer by 8% beginning in October 2019 (and will remain at...

    In December 2018, the City Council approved a new 10-year solid waste collection contract with Recology. The company currently serves many of Mercer Island's neighbors, including: Bothell, Burien, Carnation, Des Moines, Issaquah, Maple Valley, SeaTac, Seattle, Shoreline, and also Seattle Public Schools.

    The proposal process drew 4 applicants, and Recology was chosen based on its commitment to customer service, innovative outreach and education programs, and best rates, among other factors.

    Compared to the next best proposal (from current hauler Republic), on average, rates would increase for the typical residential customer by 8% beginning in October 2019 (and will remain at that level until January 2021).