As of July 20, Waste Management suspending curbside collections of yard waste for up to three weeks for customers in unincorporated Sarasota County

Action necessary because of employees having been infected by COVID-19

A Waste Management truck stops to pick up recyclables in one of the county’s new blue single-stream carts. Image courtesy Sarasota County

Effective as of Monday, July 20, curbside collections of yard waste in the unincorporated parts of Sarasota County have been suspended for up to three weeks because of the impacts of COVID-19 that Waste Management has been experiencing, county staff has announced.

Curbside garbage and recycling collection will continue with no changes in service, a county news release pointed out.

Brian Usher, manager of the county’s Solid Waste Collections Division, reinforced the need for Waste Management to maintain the garbage and recycling services. In a county video, Usher suggested that residents halt yard maintenance during the period of the temporary disruption.

“We understand that this is going to be an inconvenience to the residents,” he added of the situation.

In a July 18 email to Donn Patchen, director of the county’s Communications Department, Commissioner Charles Hines also emphasized that garbage collections take priority over yard waste collections. Hines acknowledged that the COVID-19 infection issue is a difficult one for Waste Management to handle.

Residents may dispose of yard waste at the Central County Landfill during operating hours. Although staff announced last week that standard disposal fees would apply, an update late in the afternoon of July 20 said those fees would be waived. In his July 18 email, Hines had suggested that county administrative staff consider taking that step.

Media Relations Officer Brianne Grant asked that anyone wishing to dispose of materials at the landfill take the following actions:

  • Call the Sarasota County Contact Center at 941-861-5000 in advance to confirm residency in the unincorporated part of the county and to register for disposal. (This service does not apply to residents of the cities of Sarasota, Venice or North Port or the Town of Longboat Key.)
  • Upon arrival at the Scalehouse, residents must provide identification, such as a driver’s license or utility bill that matches the registration.
  • This program does not apply to commercial vehicles.

The Central County Solid Waste Disposal Complex — which includes the county landfill — is located at 4000 Knights Trail Road in Nokomis, the news release notes. The administrative offices are open Monday through Friday from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m., the release adds.

The landfill and the construction and debris disposal area also are open Monday through Friday from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m., the release points out. On Saturdays, those areas are open from 8 a.m. to 2 p.m.

In the county video, Usher of Solid Waste Collections urged residents who plan to bring materials to the landfill to plan on arriving at least 30 minutes prior to closing.