New Compost Rule

The Seattle City Council voted 9-0 on Tuesday to approve a new ordinance that will allow the city to fine residents that do not compost.  If food scraps are found in the garbage, fines will be issued.

The fines will be $1 per violation at a residence and up to $50 for a business or apartment complex.  Seattle Public Utilities believes that 30 to 50% of items currently going in the trash could be recycled or composted.  The city already has a ban on glass, aluminum, tin, and plastic in the garbage.

The new law will take effect next year.  Fines will probably be issued starting in the late spring or early summer.  The change will help the city reach its goal of recycling 60% of everything by 2015 and reaching 70% by 2025.  Officials estimate that the new law will create 38,000 more tons of compost material each year.