New Ipswich officials discuss proposed changes to transfer station

  • Public Works Director Peter Goewey and Steve Beaulieu outline potential changes to the New Ipswich transfer station. STAFF PHOTO BY ASHLEY SAARI—

  • Peter Goewey outlines proposed changes to the New Ipswich transfer station during a site walk Tuesday. STAFF PHOTO BY ASHLEY SAARI—

Monadnock Ledger-Transcript
Published: 11/23/2022 9:46:46 AM

New Ipswich is considering several changes for the town’s transfer station, including a new layout for the station itself, and higher fees.

Select Board members discussed several potential changes for the station after a site walk on Tuesday. During the site walk, Public Works Director Peter Goewey described potential changes, including relocating the town’s two compactors, which would also require running power to the new location, and extending the shed where household trash is now deposited to have several other types of recyclables dropped off in the same location.

“It’s both better traffic flow, and easier for the employees,” Goewey explained during the site walk.

In an effort to make the process more efficient, Goewey proposed hiring a third employee for the transfer station, who would have an office in the building closest to the transfer station entrance. The employee would check people in and collect fees.

“We have a big problem with people dropping stuff off that they need to pay for, and not, and we don’t see them,” said transfer station employee Steve Beaulieu. “The way [it’s proposed], it’s a lot easier to make sure no one’s doing that.”

There are times now where people are depositing items that require fees to accept without paying, Goewey said.

Goewey is still in the process of accepting quotes for the work, and during the site walk, Select Board Chair Shawn Talbot noted that the board would like to address the changes in the coming year, and likely though the town’s budget, but had not made any official decisions on how the project would be funded.

During the board’s regular meeting, the board members also discussed several other potential changes for the station, including increasing fees across the board, along with changes such as accepting credit cards or using an online prepay system or punch cards to make the process easier and faster for residents.

Board members discussed purchasing a system to allow for people to pay their fees by credit card, which Town Administrator Deb Deaton noted would have an initial setup cost of $910, and a $360 annual fee moving forward.

Deaton also suggested residents could use an online system, through the same software the town uses for online payments for vehicle registrations, to pay for their weekly dump trip, and that they could produce a receipt when they arrived at the transfer station.

Fees proposed to rise

Goewey said the transfer station has always operated at a loss, but increasingly, costs are rising and profits from recyclables are harder to recover. Last year, the gap between the transfer station’s costs and revenue was more than $60,000.

“We have not increased the fees since I’ve been here,” Goewey said.

The board discussed increasing fees for the use of the transfer station, including the yearly annual fee to receive the transfer station sticker and the cost per individual bag of trash.

The yearly cost of a transfer station sticker is currently $20, with those 65 and older and veterans being able to receive one at no cost. Keeping the exemptions for seniors and veterans, the town is proposing a $10 annual increase.

Currently, residents have the option of purchasing bags from the town, which they are not charged for at the transfer station, or paying per bag based on its size. A 13-gallon bag currently costs $1.50, anything up to a 35-gallon bag $2.50 and up to a 45-gallon bag $3. The new proposed fees are $2, $6 and $8, respectively, and the town would no longer sell bags.

There is also a proposal to increase fees for demolition materials, charging $80 per yard for demolition material, $165 per ton for shingles, $165 per ton for sheet rock and $50 each for large tractor tires.

Selectman Jason Somero cautioned against increasing fees too steeply, noting that it could lead to an increase in littering and illegal dumping.

After discussing the issue on Tuesday, Talbot moved to delay a decision on the fee structure until the board’s Dec. 6 meeting, to allow the board time to digest the proposal. If approved, the board intends to implement new fees on the first of the year.

Ashley Saari can be  reached at 603-924-7172 ext. 244 or asaari@ledgertranscript.com. She’s on Twitter @AshleySaariMLT.


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