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Old 04-18-2011, 11:36 AM
 
Location: the Beaver State
6,466 posts, read 12,195,859 times
Reputation: 3551

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Quote:
Originally Posted by heatherinaustin View Post
Are recycling services separate from trash?

I currently live in Austin. Our water bill is never less than $200 and our electric is $200 in winter, $400 in summer - which is 9 mo. out of the year here. Ridiculous! Everyone one keeps saying it so expensive to live in Portland but I'm going to actually save money utility wise!

Thanks for the answers everyone. You're really helping me with my "PDX Budget" project!
Curbside Recycling is free. As far as I know, every city in Oregon has such now. If not it'll be the smaller rural towns that don't.

All Garbage in Portland at least is still sorted by Waste Management again, and sometimes even a third time before it's actually sent to the landfill. I heard that there is a project to duplicate Seattle's curbside compostables program to divert even more from the landfills but not sure where that actually is.
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Old 04-18-2011, 12:23 PM
 
Location: Austin
92 posts, read 334,854 times
Reputation: 29
Awesome, thanks! I'm going to feel like such a productive member of this planet when we move to Portland. Texas is very, very, very wasteful! We're correcting our bad habits and getting in the groove of composting, recycling, etc so Portlanders won't send us packing back to TX!
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Old 04-18-2011, 01:56 PM
 
Location: The greatest state of them all, Oregon.
780 posts, read 1,407,808 times
Reputation: 462
Quote:
Originally Posted by heatherinaustin View Post
Awesome, thanks! I'm going to feel like such a productive member of this planet when we move to Portland. Texas is very, very, very wasteful! We're correcting our bad habits and getting in the groove of composting, recycling, etc so Portlanders won't send us packing back to TX!
Ohio is just as bad. I would guess that fewer than 5% of the population here does any substantial recyclying.
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Old 04-18-2011, 02:15 PM
 
Location: Austin
92 posts, read 334,854 times
Reputation: 29
Quote:
Originally Posted by wanderbygrace View Post
Ohio is just as bad. I would guess that fewer than 5% of the population here does any substantial recyclying.
Well i was born in Ohio and now live in Texas so I will have to try twice as hard
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Old 04-18-2011, 05:44 PM
 
Location: Portland, Oregon
10,665 posts, read 18,052,416 times
Reputation: 7422
My only issue with home composting of food scraps is mice. Keep the composter away from the house, maybe use one of those barrels on a stand and put it in a sunny spot (heat accelerates the composting). If a neighbor composts see if you can 'borrow' about a quart of starter - it should have the little red worms and good microbes to help the process along. Turn the barrel now and again and remove finished material for use in your garden.

In San Francisco they are collecting food scraps from commercial kitchens and composting it... the farmers love the result.
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Old 04-18-2011, 08:26 PM
 
Location: Just outside of Portland
4,828 posts, read 6,468,259 times
Reputation: 5058
So people can compare rates and charges, this is my February CITY OF PORTLAND water bill for a 96 day billing period:
In the Summer, God help you if you inefficiently water your garden or fill up a swimming pool!

Service Usage Rate per CCF Charges
Water Volume 22 CCF *$ 2.733 = $ 60.13
Sewer Volume 22 CCF *$ 6.920 = $152.24
Stormwater Off-site $ 44.70
Stormwater On-site $ 24.07
Portland Harbor Superfund $4.56
Base Charge $ 26.44
Total Current Charges $312.14

Last edited by pdxMIKEpdx; 04-18-2011 at 09:08 PM..
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Old 04-18-2011, 08:45 PM
 
Location: Just outside of Portland
4,828 posts, read 6,468,259 times
Reputation: 5058
Here is my NorthWest Natural as Bill for Feb-March:
FYI... I have a gas stove, gas water heater, and forced air gas furnace.

Current Charges
Monthly Service Charge Rate 02R = $6.00
Gas Usage 139.8 Therms @ 1.02865 = $143.81
2% Portland Franchise Fee $3.30
Multnomah County Tax $.21
Public Purpose Charge $5.37
Subtotal Current Charges $158.69

Last edited by pdxMIKEpdx; 04-18-2011 at 09:09 PM..
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Old 04-18-2011, 09:04 PM
 
Location: the Beaver State
6,466 posts, read 12,195,859 times
Reputation: 3551
Quote:
Originally Posted by wanderbygrace View Post
Ohio is just as bad. I would guess that fewer than 5% of the population here does any substantial recyclying.
You might be surprised. Oregon has curb side recycling mostly because we were one of the first to do so.

These days most garbage is put into huge automated sorting machines. Some of the newer machines are pretty complex and can easily sort out paper, metal, glass, and various types of plastics all with little to no human supervision.
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Old 04-19-2011, 07:44 AM
 
Location: The greatest state of them all, Oregon.
780 posts, read 1,407,808 times
Reputation: 462
@Mike: If that's normal for the city of PDX, I'll definitely be choosing to live in a suburb. Good grief!
I just paid my monthly water & sewer bills this weekend. They were $38.47 and $22.00.

@hamellr: My mother-in-law moved in with us from Oregon about six years ago and was shocked to see the lack of recycling. She would habitually wash out glass jars or start a stack of papers for months, before she finally got in the (admittedly very bad) Ohio habit of just throwing everything out.

Most suburbs allow you to choose which trash hauling service you use, and I'd be really surprised if the vast majority of them do NOT take the trash directly to the landfill. I know some big companies (e.g. Waste Management) & city-owned hauling services (e.g. city of Akron, Ohio) do separate, but I doubt the little guys do.

Last edited by wanderbygrace; 04-19-2011 at 07:53 AM..
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Old 04-19-2011, 08:24 AM
 
Location: Austin
92 posts, read 334,854 times
Reputation: 29
Quote:
Originally Posted by pdxMIKEpdx View Post
So people can compare rates and charges, this is my February CITY OF PORTLAND water bill for a 96 day billing period:
In the Summer, God help you if you inefficiently water your garden or fill up a swimming pool!

Service Usage Rate per CCF Charges
Water Volume 22 CCF *$ 2.733 = $ 60.13
Sewer Volume 22 CCF *$ 6.920 = $152.24
Stormwater Off-site $ 44.70
Stormwater On-site $ 24.07
Portland Harbor Superfund $4.56
Base Charge $ 26.44
Total Current Charges $312.14

Thanks! Another question - I had another poster tell me that bills are paid in 3 month cycles. True for all? How do the utility companies figure rates for upcoming months OR are you paying the past 3 months?
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