Could Oahu trash troubles be solved with new fee?

The city department that oversees your trash pickup is facing a lot of hurdles from truck maintenance to pickup delays and staffing issues.

“What’s happening is that every other week we are falling behind,” said the city’s Director of Environmental Services Lori Kahikina. She says staffing issues has lead to delays in trash pickups.

It’s a problem Councilmember Ann Kobayashi is also familiar with.

“Nobody likes to have trash piled up in front of their house and the bulky items are particularly bad because they block the sidewalk.”

Bulky trash pickup issues are an ongoing problem, but currently Hawaii Kai is dealing with delays in normal trash pickups.

“When you go through the route selection if I don’t have the right number of staff these routes aren’t getting filled,” said Kahikina.

So what can be done to fix the problems?

“It’s definitely a concern like you said,” said Kahikina. “It’s a necessity like the sewers are a necessity. Actually I think best way to address it is that fee. We need that fee in order to bring in the staffing that we need.”

In the past, there was talk in the city council to add a $10 monthly user fee for trash pick up, but that never happened.

As the department deals with staffing issues there are also other concerns.

“As trucks go down facility maintenance is working on the other trucks that are down and it’s just a constant battle going back and forth back and forth,” said Kahikina.

If anyone experiences delays or problems with trash pickup they should contact the city.

“If the residents have specific locations or addresses by all means contact my staff and we will send an inspector and a crew out if necessary,” said Kahikina.


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