Sanitation FAQ | City of Bloomington, Indiana (2024)

How do I sign up for City sanitation services?

If you're moving into a new residence that already has carts, you will begin receiving sanitation services once you have signed up for water service through City of Bloomington Utilities.

If your residence does not have carts, please contact the Sanitation Division at, or (812) 349-3443.

How do I pay for sanitation services?

Sanitation costs are included in your monthly City of Bloomington Utilities (CBU) statement. Through the current CBU billing options, residents can elect to set up automatic monthly payments, pay online, by mail or in person at the CBU service center located at 600 E. Miller Drive.

How many sanitation carts do I need?

Each household receives two carts: one cart for solid waste and one cart for recycling. You will only be charged for your solid waste cart; recycling is free.

Who chooses the size of the container for rental homes, the landlord or the tenant?

If the landlord’s name is on the utility bill, the landlord determines cart size. If a tenant's name is on the utility bill, then the tenant receives priority. When a new tenant moves in, they have the option to contact the Sanitation Division and request a different cart size if their name is on the utility bill; however, they would be responsible for the $50 cart exchange fee. If the landlord’s name is on the utility bill, they are in charge of responding to any change in tenants’ sanitation needs.

What is my pickup day?

Find your collection day by utilizing the City's mybloomington tool. Both solid waste and recycling are collected on a weekly basis.

What happens with my sanitation or recycling serviceson holidays?

- 2024 Holiday Delays -

  • There will be a one day delay in Sanitation services on the following holidays: Thanksgiving Day (Thursday, 11/28/2024), Christmas Day (Wednesday, 12/25/2024) and New Year's Day (Wednesday, 1/1/2025)..
  • Sanitation customers should place their waste and recycling carts on the curb by 5:00 a.m. one day after these holidays.
  • Normal trash and recycling operations are in place with no service delaysforALLother 2024 federal and city holidays(i.e. MLK Day, Memorial Day, Independence Day/4th of July, Presidents Day, Juneteenth, Labor Day, Election Dayand Veterans Day).

Cart Size Options and Monthly Pricing:

These prices are for the sanitation carts ONLY. There is no charge for your recycling cart, regardless of the size you choose.

  • 35 gallon cart: (19" wide/23.75" deep/37.5" high): $8.75/month
  • 64 gallon cart: (24" wide/27" deep/41.5" high): $16.00/month
  • 96 gallon cart: (26" wide/34.5" deep/46" high): $24.00/month

Can I exchange my cart for a different size?

You may exchange your cart for a different size at any time by contacting the Sanitation Division at or (812) 349-3443. Please note that there will be a $25 exchange fee assessed for each cart that you wish to exchange. If you do change your cart size, the City will make every effort to deliver the new cart(s) by the next billing cycle. The change in cost will be reflected on your next billing cycle, and you will be assessed the cart exchange fee on your next CBU statement.

How do I separate waste from recycling?

Solid waste should be placed in the cart designated for waste (gray lid), while all recycling should be disposed of in the cart designated for recycling (yellow lid).

Recycling items (glass, paper, aluminum and steel cans, plastics) can all be placed directly into the recycling container mixed together; there is no need to separate or sort items. Please note that recycling items cannot bebagged and will not be accepted if found this way. All items to be recycledneed to be placed loosely and straightinto the recycling container. Allitems to be recycled also need to beclean andfree of food waste or other debris.

Questionsabout what items can be recycled and those that cannot be collected? Click here to learn more or scan the QR code belowwith a smartphone’s camera:

Sanitation FAQ | City of Bloomington, Indiana (1)

Where should I place my carts?

Please place trash and recycling carts at your curb, facing the direction indicated on the cart lids by 5:00 a.m. on your designated collection day. The carts should be placed at least four feet from one another, and both carts should be placed at least four feet from other obstacles like mailboxes, trees, overhead wires, etc. All carts must be at least ten feet from all vehicles. Additionally, all cart lids need to be fully closed in order to receive collection.

How long can my carts remain out on the street/sidewalk after collection occurs?

Per City ordinance, all carts, containers and other articles to be picked up shall not be placed upon the street or sidewalk so as to be visible from the street more than twenty-four (24) hours prior to the time when such solid waste, recycling or yard waste is to be collected. Carts and containers shall be removed from the street or sidewalk on the same day as the collection is made. Failure to comply can result in fines being levied.

Sanitation crews left a Non-Collection Notice on my trash or recycling container - why?

In the event that Sanitation crews do not collect your trash or recycling, a non-collection notice will be left explaining the problem. To ensure collection of your trash and recycling, please follow these guidelines:

  • Set carts near the street
  • Point front of carts toward the street
  • Set carts 4 feet apart, 4 feet away from other objects and 10 feet away from vehicles
  • Close lids completely
  • Bag all solid waste
  • Do NOT bag recyclable materials
  • Place all solid waste and recycling INSIDE the container

What happens if my container gets stolen, misplaced, or damaged?

Carts have RFID (radio frequency identification) tracking system technology to identify your carts with your household. City staff will be responsible for making repairs to damaged carts and will work with residents when carts are stolen or misplaced.If a cart sustains damage caused by City services, the City will cover the cost of replacement. All other damages to the cart, such as vandalism or mutilation, will result in a $50 charge to the resident for a full cart replacement.

    How is yard waste collected, and how will I be billed for it?

    Yard waste will be collected every other week between April and December only (see your trash magnet or use the myBloomington tool to find your yard waste collection days).

    Yard waste must weigh less than 40 pounds and be placed in receptacles up to 35 gallons or in paper yard waste bags (plastic bags are not allowed for yard waste). Sticks may be bundled if they measure 48 inches by 24 inches or less.

    Billing for yard waste is $1 per container or bundle and will automatically be added to the customer’s utility bill through the City's billing software system.

    Are there optional yard waste carts available for purchase?

    A 64-gallon cart dedicated toresidential yard waste collectionis an available option to any resident. It is exactly like a normal 64 gallon trash or recycling cart (same dimensions, has wheels and a green lid) and can be purchasedupon request for a one-time charge of $70, which includes Indiana sales tax.

    Although not required for yard waste collection, the new cart option has several benefits for residents. It eliminates the need to purchase brown paper yard bags or to bundle up sticks, brush, or limbs. At nearly double the capacity of the 35-gallon plastic or metal waste containers currently allowed for yard waste collection, the wheeled 64-gallon carts can make yard cleanup more efficient.

    There is no weight limit on the carts; the only requirement is that the lid be fully closed when the cart is placed at the curb. The cost per pickup of the cart will remain $1 for each collection and that charge willautomatically be placedon the resident’s utility bill.

    If you are interested in purchasing a yard waste cart, please contact the Sanitation Division at (812) 349-3443

    How do I dispose of large items orappliances?

    The charge for pickup of any large item $25 or appliance is $35 (per item); residents should call the Sanitation Division at 812-349-3443, or complete this on-line form, to schedule a collection time for these items.

    You must schedule an appointment with Sanitation in order to have large items and appliances picked up by crews. Large items will be picked up on your regular service day, and appliances will be picked up on Thursdays.

    I have a large amount of trash this week and it won't all fit in my container, can I request an extra pick-up?

    If you find yourself with higher amounts of trash than usual, or forget to place your container out on trash pick-up day, additional pick-ups during theweek are available upon request.

    You must contact the Sanitation Division at (812) 349-3443, or complete this on-line form, to request and schedule these additional weekly pickups (they will occur on Fridays).

    There is an extra charge associated with these requests, depending on the size of your cart. They are as follows:

    35 gallon cart additional weekly pickup fee$2.54
    64 gallon cart additional weekly pickup fee$4.65
    96 gallon cart additional weekly pickup fee$6.98

    A note on usingcommercial dumpsters: if a resident is using a dumpster fora significant amount of trash orhas a need for the occasional removal of bulk trash associated with construction,moving, or seasonal cleaning, there isnot a required authorization to utilize a commercial enterprise, other than for approval of dumpsters within the City's right-of-way. Call the Engineering Department at (812) 349-3913 for more information about obtaining these right-of-way approvals for dumpsters.

    The sanitation team only picked up my trash cart. Did they forget about my recycling?

    The crews collect waste and recycling during different runs, often resulting in cart pickup occurring at different times throughout your designated collection day.

    I have an item with bedbugs, can I leave it outfor sanitation collection?

    Items that have bedbugs will not be collected in order to protect City of Bloomington Sanitation Division personnel.

    I have sharps and medication that needs to be disposed:what are myoptions?

    Click here to learn more information about local sharps and medication disposal options from the Monroe County Health Department.

    What is the final destination of the City's solid waste and recycling?

    Solid waste is taken to an approved local vendor who handles the final disposal. Recycling also goes to an approved local vendor, who then transfers it to a Materials Recovery Facility (MRF) in Indianapolis for sorting and reuse in the commodities market.

    Why didn’t the City consider an “opt-out” or “pay-as-you-throw option”?

    A predictable and sustainable model of funding was necessary for such a large-scale change to an essential City service. The Public Works Department has committed to analyzing the data collected with the new modernized sanitation system to determine if a true "pay-as-you-throw" system is possible in the future.

    Our goal for the modernized sanitation system is to improve the quality of our City by increasing the efficiency of our operations, improving the safety of our workers, and preserving the well-being of our environment.

    Sanitation FAQ | City of Bloomington, Indiana (2024)


    What can be recycled in Bloomington, IN? ›

    All Locations Accept:
    • Paper & Cardboard. (Must be dry) ...
    • Plastic. (Must be rigid, clean, & dry) ...
    • Glass. (Must be clean & dry) ...
    • Metal. (Must be clean, emptied, detached) ...
    • Reusable. The Recycling Center Trading Posts provide a free place to exchange useful household goods.
    • Compostable. ...
    • Electrical. ...
    • Trash.

    Which item Cannot be recycled? ›

    Non-recyclable items
    • Garbage.
    • Food waste.
    • Food-tainted items (such as: used paper plates or boxes, paper towels, or paper napkins)
    • Ceramics and kitchenware.
    • Windows and mirrors.
    • Plastic wrap.
    • Packing peanuts and bubble wrap.
    • Wax boxes.

    What doesn't get recycled? ›

    The truth is that plastic with food residues in or on it usually cannot be recycled. Only good quality, clean, plastics can go through the recycling process.

    What clothes Cannot be recycled? ›

    5 Clothing Items That Can't Be Recycled
    • Blended Fabrics. While most fabrics, be it natural or synthetic can be recycled, those that are made out of a blend or have a unique composition are next to impossible to recycle. ...
    • Wet Or Unclean Clothes. ...
    • Anything With Fixtures. ...
    • Embellished Clothes. ...
    • Recycled Polyester.
    Feb 20, 2022

    What can go in plastic recycling? ›

    In your recycling bin or bags, you can put: plastic – including bottles, pots, tubs, cartons and carrier bags (empty and untied) paper – including newspapers, magazines and letters. cardboard – including cereal and egg boxes.

    What can plastic containers be recycled into? ›

    A wide range of products can be made from recycled plastic including:
    • drinks bottles and food trays.
    • polyester fabric for clothing.
    • wheeled bins and food caddies.
    • refuse sacks and carrier bags.
    • composters and wormeries.
    • wheel arch liners and bumpers on cars.
    • damp proof membranes.
    • reusable crates and pallets.

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