Program Guidelines

Help York County Stay Clean and Litter Free! 

York County has moved from manual collections of household trash and recycling placed at the curb to automated collection programs utilizing wheeled containers with lids. Although services are provided by two different contractors (Tidewater Fibre Corp, or TFC Recycling, is our current recycling contractor, Republic Services currently provides garbage collection services,) operations typically work the same. Automated Collection is a safer, more efficient collection method because it allows drivers to remain in the truck, controlling the entire operation from the driver’s seat, resulting in faster service and fewer job-related injuries. In the case of recycling, which is now collected every other week, we also see a reduction in operational costs such as gas, vehicle maintenance, as well as carbon pollutants that are released into the air. In addition, durable containers utilized in an automated collection program have wheels and lids which can greatly reduce litter, odor and pest problems. 

Although we make every effort to minimize litter and return carts to their original location after service, sometimes wind or other factors will cause a cart to tip over, and sometimes litter spills out during the emptying process. Following are some tips that you can use to make sure your container is fully emptied each week and associated litter is minimized:

  • Make sure your cart is placed at the curb properly. Carts should be at least three feet from obstacles (including utility poles, mailboxes, trees and/or parked cars), with the container handle facing away from the street and toward your home. Lids should open to the street. (Dumping containers that are “backwards” can break or damage the lid, and/or prevent the lid from closing after the driver returns to cart to its location.)
  • Place your cart on as level a surface as possible to provide a stable location from which the automated equipment can pick up and set back down.
  • Make sure your cart is not overfilled and the lid is securely closed.
  • For curbside garbage collections we encourage you to use trash bags, as doing so will help to reduce litter and keep your container cleaner longer. Lightweight materials such as Styrofoam and paper are easily blown out of the cart during the automated collection process. (This information is for garbage carts only. Please remember that plastic bags are NEVER accepted in the curbside recycling program.)
  • To help minimize litter from the recycling collection process, place heavier items such as a telephone book on top of your other paper items, or by place all of your loose recycling into PAPER bags, then place the paper bags into your recycling cart. Shredded paper should always be placed into a paper bag before going into your recycling bin.
  • Don’t overfill or pack too tightly either container, and make sure that cardboard is broken down to fit into your container without getting “wedged” in. Containers that are too packed or have wedged cardboard will not completely empty during the automated process. Another method of maximizing space when you have excess material (for recycling containers ONLY) is to flatten and place cardboard on top of the cart, using the lid to hold it in place. Special collections of large quantities of cardboard can be scheduled by calling the York County Waste Management Center at 757-890-3780.

Sometimes, despite everyone’s best effort, a cart will end up tipping over. Hopefully, though, if everyone does their part, those occasions will be minimal! For additional information about the curbside garbage or recycling collection programs, please contact the York County Waste Management Office at 757-890-3780.