Transfer station cuts back to two days a week

(Photo by Dion Ogust)

(Photo by Dion Ogust)

The Saugerties Town Board has decided to drastically cut back operations at the town’s transfer station, also used by Woodstock residents, from five to two days a week and end its contract with the Ulster County Resource Recovery Agency (RRA) in a bid to save money.

Starting January 1, 2016, the transfer station will be open only on Tuesdays and Saturdays from 7 a.m. to 3 p.m. Currently, it’s open Tuesday through Saturday.

Saugerties Supervisor Greg Helsmoortel said  the decision was due to “spiraling” RRA costs that the board expected would continue during the five-year period of the new contract. The town will instead contract with a private hauler, which also provides the roll-off containers.


One full-time and one part-time position would be eliminated under the plan. According to the town budget adopted November 18, spending for “refuse and garbage” will be cut from $399,319 in 2015 to $363,317 in 2016.

Helsmoortel was unable to say how many residents or businesses would be affected by the cutbacks.

The reduced hours will also affect Woodstockers who use the facility. Woodstock Town Board member Bill McKenna said the board had discussed the possibility of cutbacks or closure at a recent meeting, but the issue hadn’t stirred much noticeable concern.

“Most people I know say they’ll be going to the Hurley dump,” especially anyone who traveled regularly to the Kingston area, he said.

The RRA currently holds contracts with 19 municipalities, according to executive director Tim Rose. Four other municipalities — the towns of Ulster, Marbletown and Marlboro together with the city of Kingston — have decided to not renew their contracts with the agency, he said.

The impact on the RRA’s bottom line will be small, Rose said; the fees associated with the RRA comprise roughly eight percent of its $13 million budget. All refuse still must pass through the RRA due to the county’s “flow control” law; the contract is just for who will do the hauling from customer to the dump in Kingston.

The transfer station is used by a range of residents, many of whom drive pickups. Contractors use it to dispose of loose debris, as do residents who find it’s cheaper to pay by the truckload or bag than to contract monthly with a private hauler. Permits are $30 a year, and per-bag fees range from $1 to $7, depending on size. Others, who may only visit a transfer station once or twice in a lifetime, pay one-time fees to dispose of old appliances and other items a garbage hauler won’t take.

There is one comment

  1. ANON

    The people who work at the dump are always saying the CC machine is down and will only take cash. When they take the cash they do not ring it in the register.

    Is it a surprise they are not making money? If I had to guess it is going into the pockets of the employees in the form of cash..

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