Solid Waste Collection

Exclusive Solid Waste Collection Franchise 
The City of Santa Rosa and Recology, Inc. dba Recology Sonoma Marin maintain an exclusive franchise agreement for the collection of solid waste, organic waste and recyclable materials in the city pursuant to Chapter 9-12 of the Santa Rosa City Code. The term of the agreement begins on January 1, 2018 and ends on December 31, 2032, for a term of fifteen (15) years. 
Solid Waste Collection Services Agreement

Low-Income Program 

In Santa Rosa, low-income households may be eligible for a 15% discount. Participation in the Pacific Gas and Electric (PG&E) CARE program qualifies you for Recology’s low-income rate program.

Simply mail or email Recology a copy of your most current PG&E bill showing participation in the CARE program. The name and address on your PG&E account must match the name and address on your Recology account. Please note that you may be asked to verify annually.

Bulky Item Collection

Residential customers receive two free pickups per year (multi-family dwellings also receive two free pickups per year, however the pickup must be scheduled by the property manager). Collections are permitted of up to three cubic yards of large item material per collection. Large items in excess of these amounts will incur an extra charge. The service account must be in your name. 

Recology’s bulky item pick-up program does not accept liquids, dirt, rock, concrete or asphalt, hazardous waste, auto parts that have contained liquids, items with an internal combustion engine (such as lawnmowers or weed eaters) and propane tanks. Please contact Recology to schedule a bulky-item pickup at 1-800-243-0291.

Contact Information  
Recology Sonoma Marin's customer service and administration office is located in Santa Rosa. Please contact Recology regarding questions about waste collection, bulky item pickup, street sweeping, billing/rates, etc. 

3400 Standish Avenue 
Santa Rosa, CA 95407

Phone: 1-800-243-0291 
Website additional resources

Sonoma County Waste Management Agency (SCWMA)
The Sonoma County Waste Management Agency (SCWMA) is a joint powers authority whose mission is to implement waste diversion programs as required by State Law AB 939. The agency was formed in 1992 and includes the nine incorporated cities and the County of Sonoma. SCWMA’s job is to inform local Sonoma County residents and businesses of ways they can help reduce, reuse and recycle their solid waste and properly dispose of hazardous materials. SCWMA’s website provides many resources and guidance regarding household hazardous waste disposal, composting, wood waste recycling and planning and education.
SCWMA website

Frequently Asked Questions

The City of Santa Rosa has received several questions from the community relating to the Solid Waste Collection Services Agreement with Recology. The information below serves to provide insight into many of those questions:

Why did the rates increase?

The City of Santa Rosa and North Bay Corporation (Ratto) had an exclusive franchise agreement in place for the collection of solid waste, organic waste and recyclable materials since 2003. The agreement was last amended in 2010 and expired on December 31, 2017. As such, on July 12, 2016, City Council approved issuing a Request for Proposals for solid waste services beginning January 2018. 

Every bidder on Santa Rosa's competitive contract process proposed sharply higher rates, because those rates are in line with what other Bay Area franchises are charging for garbage service and is ultimately today’s cost of providing the service. Previously, residential waste collection rates in Santa Rosa were approximately 45% percent lower, on average, then surrounding Bay Area cities. In other words, we have seen and benefited from unusually low rates for many years in Santa Rosa. Providing new and improved waste collection services to the residents of Santa Rosa comes with increased costs. 

Why did the City choose Recology?

The Recology mission represents a fundamental shift from traditional waste management to resource recovery. Recology serves to achieve high landfill diversion and meet sustainability goals. Under its agreement with the City, Recology is required to progressively increase waste diversion from our landfill over the next ten years, with a diversion rate of sixty percent (60%) required by 2029.  In contrast, the previous waste hauler’s diversion rate was about thirty seven percent (37%). Recology introduced new 2017-18 model year collection vehicles to service the City in full compliance with applicable local, state and federal clean air requirements. The vehicles are fueled with renewable diesel. This vehicle upgrade equates to a significant reduction in greenhouse emissions within our community. 

In addition, the contract delivers sustainability resources that will assist Santa Rosa in meeting state mandated diversion requirements (AB 939, AB 341, AB 1826).   Recology’s “Waste Zero” Santa Rosa team is devoted to providing public education and outreach programs to further support the City’s diversion and waste reduction goals. 

Ultimately, with Recology, we expect to see a higher rate of recycling and diversion from our local landfill, new trucks that emit fewer pollutants into our local environment and compliance with all applicable laws and regulations.

What process was used to select a new hauler?

On July 12, 2016, City Council approved issuing a Request for Proposals for solid waste services beginning January 2018. On September 1, 2016 and September 7, 2016, the City held public meetings to receive public input and feedback regarding collection services in the City. The public expressed a desire for improved recycling and diversion rates, improved customer service and a preference for the selection of a quality services provider rather than the selection of the least expensive provider. The public was incorporated into the City’s Request for Proposals (RFP) for solid waste service providers. 
On October 20, 2016, the City posted a Request for Proposals for a new solid waste provider.  On January 30, 2017 RFP #16-79 closed and five proposals were received by the City. A panel including City staff, one Council member and one representative from Sonoma County Waste Management Agency (SCWMA) was assembled to evaluate the proposals.
The panel established the following goals to guide the process:  

  • Provide a high level of service for the City’s residents and businesses
  • Increase diversion and reduce disposal using innovative techniques
  • Provide cost-effective and efficient collection and processing methods
  • Provide for state-of-the-art fully permitted or licensed processing, operations and maintenance facilities
  • Provide various diversion and sustainability programs (AB 939, AB 341, AB 1826, etc.) that address achievement of the State’s 75% diversion goal and SCWMA’s 70% diversion goal
  • Reduce emissions, traffic and wear and tear on the City’s streets caused by collection vehicles
  • Provide public education and outreach programs and information to further support City’s diversion requirements and goals
  • Provide and continually staff a Zero Waste Manager position to oversee diversion goals and public outreach component
  • Commit to environmental stewardship including use of local vendors and an overall “green” approach to providing services
  • Provide services that are easily tracked, including waste hauler reporting requirements and performance standards