Here’s everything you need to know about the city’s new bulky item pilot

Here’s everything you need to know about the city’s new bulky item pilot
The city says it's revamping the bulky item pickup system to rein in costs. (Image: Hawaii News Now)

HONOLULU, Hawaii (HawaiiNewsNow) - Big changes are coming for bulky item pickup collection in Urban Honolulu.

The city held a news conference Wednesday to discuss the new, appointment-based pilot program.

The long and short of it: Residents will now have to set up an appointment to have their monster trash picked up rather than setting it out on the curb during a given week.

Here’s everything you need to know about the new system:

  • When will the pilot program begin?

The pilot program officially begins June 3, but residents can go online now or call to make an appointment. The city said the pilot will continue until at least January 2020.

The city said the pilot extends from Hawaii Kai to Foster Village (and includes Waikiki).

For now, bulky item pickup remains the same for all other communities.

  • How do I make an appointment to get my trash picked up?

You can make an appointment by going to opala.org or by calling 768-3200.

The website also provides alternate options, including where you can take your trash to dump it yourself or where you can donate lightly-used household items.

  • How many bulky items can I dispose of in one appointment?

It depends.

If you live in a single-family home, you can only dispose of up to five bulky items per appointment.

Condos or multi-unit development are allowed to dispose of up to 20 bulky items per month.

In the near future, the city said each individual unit will be able to make an appointment to dispose of their own bulky items.

  • Can I still leave my bulky items on the curb before the appointment date?

No. It is illegal to leave your items on the curb before the appointment date.

The city said bulky items should be put out by 6 a.m. on the day of the appointment and no earlier than the night before.

Under the pilot, violators will face a warning. But the city said repeat violators could be fined.

  • What if someone else dumps their bulky items onto my curb?

The city said it’s concerned about illegal dumping and will be monitoring the situation as the pilot kicks off.

Inspectors will accompany each bulky item pick-up team to look for problems, the city said.

Meanwhile, officials said that if you can identify who dumped their trash onto your curb, they’ll be asked to remove it. If you can’t, you might be liable.

  • Why does the city say the system has to change?

The simple reason: Ballooning costs.

From 2008 to 2018, the amount of bulky item trash picked up by the city has increased by 80%.

City officials say the bulky item pickup system currently is also inefficient, requiring trash trucks to drive up and down every street in a neighborhood looking for trash to pick up.

Mayor Kirk Caldwell also said he’s hopeful the pilot will also decrease illegal dumping in communities.

“People have been using our city streets for decades as a dumping ground … and we’ve been challenged with these issues for years," he said. "And now as mayor for almost 7 years, we continue to struggle with people who just don’t follow the laws and procedures we put into place.”

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