Garbage Will Cost More Than Police, Says Superior Mayor

City Seeks Reduction In Waste Management Fees

Matthew Peoples (CC-BY-NC-ND)

Superior Mayor Bruce Hagen would like to cut costs at the city’s landfill and he’s looking to the state for relief.

Hagen said it costs the city more than $6 million a year to operate the landfill and he said he would like the state to exempt Superior from tipping fees or, at least, reduce them.

“Next year, if the projections keep continuing, the landfill’s going to cost more money than the Police Department,” Hagen said. “We’ll be paying more money to pack garbage than we’re paying for safety in the city. That’s wrong.”

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Hagen said the city is paying around $1.7 million to the state in tipping fees. Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources Waste and Materials Management Director Ann Coakley said communities can charge more for garbage collection to offset costs.

But Superior’s Hagen said changes to state law under the last budget require cities to lower property tax collections by the same amount that would be brought in from a rate increase. He said that would likely mean cuts to other city services to balance their $28 million budget.