Composting - Three Cart Pay-as-you-throw Program

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What is the PAYT program?
The City's PAYT program is a three-cart volume-based system that encourages recycling and composting of waste. The program rate structure incentivizes customers to recycle and compost as much as possible.

The City of Lafayette currently provides a PAYT program to approximately 55% of the city, assisting residents to divert waste away from landfills. This program has been successful in positively affecting our diversion goals and reflecting our community’s sustainability values, but we can, and desire, to do even more!

City Council approved a waste diversion goal of 45% by 2021 and 85% by 2046. It’s important for Lafayette residents to support these goals in order for us to meet them, and we’re looking at ways to help make that happen.


What are the benefits of a PAYT program?

  • Help support our community’s sustainability goals:
    • Council approved waste diversion goals of 45% by 2021 and 85% by 2046 as a reflection of our community sustainability values.
  • Be a good steward for the environment:
    • Less waste = fewer landfills, which protects the beautiful Front Range landscape that we all value.
    • Recycled or composted waste can be used to create new materials without using virgin resources.
    • Fewer trash trucks in neighborhoods lessens traffic, reduces road damage, and decreases noise and air pollution
  • Contribute to good community financial management:
    • The more waste we divert, the longer it is before we need new landfills. Future landfills will be located farther away and result in higher hauling prices.
  • A City-wide program could reduce costs for homeowners
    • A larger customer base provides economies of scale which can result in lower prices
    • By choosing to recycle and compost more, individual households can reduce the cost of waste carts

What is the PAYT program?
The City's PAYT program is a three-cart volume-based system that encourages recycling and composting of waste. The program rate structure incentivizes customers to recycle and compost as much as possible.

The City of Lafayette currently provides a PAYT program to approximately 55% of the city, assisting residents to divert waste away from landfills. This program has been successful in positively affecting our diversion goals and reflecting our community’s sustainability values, but we can, and desire, to do even more!

City Council approved a waste diversion goal of 45% by 2021 and 85% by 2046. It’s important for Lafayette residents to support these goals in order for us to meet them, and we’re looking at ways to help make that happen.


What are the benefits of a PAYT program?

  • Help support our community’s sustainability goals:
    • Council approved waste diversion goals of 45% by 2021 and 85% by 2046 as a reflection of our community sustainability values.
  • Be a good steward for the environment:
    • Less waste = fewer landfills, which protects the beautiful Front Range landscape that we all value.
    • Recycled or composted waste can be used to create new materials without using virgin resources.
    • Fewer trash trucks in neighborhoods lessens traffic, reduces road damage, and decreases noise and air pollution
  • Contribute to good community financial management:
    • The more waste we divert, the longer it is before we need new landfills. Future landfills will be located farther away and result in higher hauling prices.
  • A City-wide program could reduce costs for homeowners
    • A larger customer base provides economies of scale which can result in lower prices
    • By choosing to recycle and compost more, individual households can reduce the cost of waste carts

Guest Book

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Would love if composting in Indian Peaks and in Lafayette was available. We support the sustainability efforts for the sake of our environment. Totally support the pay as you throw program

D2 20 days ago

Our family is in big favor of composting in Indian Peaks and in Lafayette. We support the sustainability efforts for the sake of our environment. We are okay with weekly or biweekly composting services.

hingorau 10 months ago

Our family composted for 16 years in Louisville. After moving to Indian Peaks, we were astonished to find out composting is not done. We are in huge favor of adding composting services to the Indian Peaks neighborhood. It is a great way to save compostable items from going to the landfill and a sustainable practice for our environment.

hingorau 10 months ago

Please consider WEEKLY pick up for all THREE services. Currently, we constantly have to throw recycling in the regular garbage since we fill our recycling prior to 2nd week pick up. Compost will have an intolerable smell if not picked up weekly. For those of us in HOAs that do now allow trash cans to be stored outside, we wouldn’t take advantage of compost if not a scheduled weekly pick up simply due to smell in our garage - especially in the summer.

Lauren 10 months ago

This program is substantially more expensive than our current HOA program, $300-$500 more depending on the size bins selected (our HOA program provides 96 gallon trash and recycling bins). The city ought to be able to get better pricing than a small HOA. And I don't have room to store 3 bins in the garage.

JohnH 11 months ago

In general very supportive of the current PAYT system. Keep up the sustainability focus Lafayette.

ajwonk 11 months ago

I have spoken to many of my neighbors and they do not compost because it only comes once a week in the summer, and leads to maggots and stinky composting matter. We would all be grateful, if during the hottest months composting could be every week.

ajwonk 11 months ago

I live in an HOA and would welcome composting with a hauler that is at least as consistent as our current hauler. My only concern with the city plan is that I hear about poor service from the city's chosen hauler, while we haven't experienced any problems with the HOA contracted service.

Stevek 11 months ago

I live in an HOA community with composting. I was able to reduce the size of my trash bin and do not find composting difficult or time consuming - tissues, paper towels, banana peels, apple cores, coffee grounds. I hardly have any trash. My daughter lives in an HOA community without composting plus her trash container is huge and her recycle container is small. She ends up putting recycling in the trash when her recycle bin is full plus all the trash that could be composted. We need to do this for our future generations!

Diana Doner 12 months ago

This is a no brainier. Every dwelling which generates trash should be included in the composting program. It is ridiculous to have city goals and worldwide needs and not require people to participate.

Ellenrs 12 months ago

I have lived in Lafayette for 20 years and would LOVE for our South Pointe Subdivision HOA to be included in this program! I believe we have over 300 homes in our sub. That would be A LOT of waste going to composting instead of a landfill. It is amazing that so much more is able to be composted with the city. We are a family of 5 and on average have 1-2 trash bags a week. If we were able to compost I would have less than a trash bag going to the landfill. I have tried composting in my own backyard with not much luck. I do understand that change is hard and it takes some adjusting, but we are not the first city to do this.. Thank you to this amazing little town for wanting and trying to do the right thing for our City and State. I really do feel they have the best interest for our people and city! Thank You!! SC :-)

SC 12 months ago

After reading other comments and also after receiving information from Tony Raeker regarding the proposed PAYT waste collection system, it is obvious that the City of Lafayette will do as it wants. We are seniors, living in a small HOA with small garages that cannot accommodate 3 waste carts! We are good stewards of the environment, and are diligent about recycling 64 gals every 2 weeks, would have very little waste to dispose of, and we prefer our current Waste Management company, but we are NOT INTERESTED in composting!We do not approve of being forced to pay for composting, even though we will not participate in the program, however, if that is what the City decides to do, we will have no choice!JBH

JBH 12 months ago

As a homeowner with an HOA that doesn't offer composting, I am very much in favor of joining the rest of Lafayette and neighboring communities, and composting!!!

wendidrake 12 months ago

I live in a neighborhood that has an HOA and I am so glad that finally, we HOA homes will be considered as residents of Lafayette who are required and expected to support the city's sustainability goals. While the "rank and file" citizens of Lafayette have been shouldering the participation and financial burden for years, it's past time HOA members give up their exclusivity and are expected to pitch in like any other citizen. It's hard to imagine why we haven't been included from the start. To actually make a difference, all of us need to participate. I applaud the City Council for putting years into this planning and look forward to living in a community where everyone does his or her part.

sandy backlund 12 months ago

For all the people on here that *WANT* composting, noting is stopping you, either have your HOA join the city program or have your HOA provide that service. It is up to the HOA to decide if it will benefit enough folks to warrant the cost.What many object to is being *FORCED* into a system that they don't want and won't use. The city's main consultant on this is EcoCycle and they report that over 90% of compost material is yard waste. HOAs that have lawn services don't generate much (if any) yard waste and composting is a waste for these neighborhoods. The materials and energy to create bins that won't be used and having the large trucks drive through the neighborhood every other week will cause more emissions and environmental damage than not providing compost services. Many HOA's have done a much better job of negotiating contracts than the city, and with a much smaller user count. Forcing folks to pay more will take money out of the city's pockets. My HOA's trash rates will go up from 75 to 95% if forced onto the city plan. This is $15 a month (per household) that will not be spent at local businesses and will not generate sales tax for the city.When the original plan was envisioned, it was to get multiple trucks off the streets of non-HOA neighborhoods and cut down on emissions and provide recycling to all of Lafayette. Most of these benefits were met without having to force neighborhoods into a system that was basically the same. That goal was met, time to move on to other issues and leave the HOAs to manage their own business.

777 12 months ago

I also live in an HOA that has a contract with Waste Management. We pay almost half of what the City is proposing. We also do not have room in our garages for three bins. Proposing a mandatory switch to the City’s system seems pretty heavy handed. JES

JES 12 months ago

I am in favor of the pay-as-you-throw billing system. I live in an HOA and would like to have the ability to use the city's trash service so that I have options on sizes of trash bins and have compost bins available as well. It gives everyone the opportunity to choose exactly what kind of service they desire and hopefully less waste will be sent to landfills.

DA 12 months ago

Tony - as a resident in Indian Peaks we would very much like it if composting were made available to our neighborhood. ThanksRex Hauck

rexhauck 12 months ago

I have a number of friends in Boulder who use the composting option. Every one of them is very excited about the tremendous benefit of composting, i.e., they find that the volume of trash they throw away has decreased tremendously since they have the composting option.I live in Indian Peaks in the Eagle's Landing section. My wife and I would be very excited to see Lafayette include us in your PAYT program!

rtuenge 12 months ago

I live in an HOA neighborhood with around 100 houses. Our neighborhood generates very little trash on an average week. Many people only put out 1 or 2 black bags of trash, not even in a can/cart. I have a big trash cart and only usually have 1 or 2 kitchen size bags, so it is mostly empty. These would easily fit in the smallest trash can on the city plan, and probably with plenty of room to spare if we were able to direct compostables to the compost cart. As a solution to the folks who don't want the 3rd cart, maybe they can take the lead from folks in our neighborhood and just not have a trash cart and only put out a single bag of trash on trash day. I've seen the city carts so, I'll alternatively argue that 1 recycle cart + 1 small trash cart + 1 small compost cart takes up about the same space as the 1 recycle cart + 1 trash cart that I have now. I am really excited about the 3 cart program and want to get it in my neighborhood. It's really not fair that a big hunk of Lafayette has access to it and there are a lot of us left out. I care about the environment, our watershed, and my carbon footprint and already do some composting in the back yard but really want to do more.Also, it should be made clear that the city plan is not a single fixed price. Some information has been circulating in the community that the cost of the city plan is about $40/month. This could be around double what some folks pay if their share of their HOA dues for trash is around $20/month. The $40/month price is only for one option (a 96 gallon trash cart and 96 gallon compost cart). The cheapest option is for a 32 gallon trash cart and 32 gallon compost cart, only $16. I've looked over our HOA budget and estimate that my trash bill will not really change much and might even go down, but I'd get an extra service, curbside compost, basically for free. I think this is a win-win-win.

Adam 12 months ago