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Starting this month, it will be more expensive to screw up your recycling if you live in a building of 9 or more apartments. Here's the deal, according to a memo we received from the Superintendents Technical Association:
- The city has established two tiers for fines depending on building size. Residential buildings with 1-8 units will see no change: It's still $25.00 for the first citation, $50.00 for the second and $100.00 for the third. But fines for residential buildings with nine or more units and commercial buildings will increase from those levels to $100 for the first violation, $200 for the second and $400 for the third.
- First-time offender buildings of less than nine units have the option of attending an in-person or online recycling tutorial or paying the fine. In addition, the city will provide training for owners and employees of buildings with 9 or more units that receive three tickets in one year.
- More changes are coming in 2011, some of which are voluntary, such as textiles recycling or "pilot" programs like the "Paint Stewardship Pilot Program" which will enable residents to safely dispose of paint from remodeling or renovation projects. There will also be periodic household hazardous waste collection. For more information on New York City's recycling programs, check out the Department of Sanitation's website.
Meanwhile, starting Friday Dec. 3rd, you will no longer be allowed to drag your bare naked mattress to the street. In a new law targeting the city's bed bug epidemic, the Sanitation Department will require all mattresses or boxsprings put out for garbage collection to be fully encased within a sealed plastic bag available at department stores, home improvement centers, and online. (Many bedding stores also provide removal options with purchases.) Full enforcement of the mattress rule, which can result in a $100 fine for non-compliance, will begin on January 3, 2011.
Hint: If you have bed bugs, make sure you seal up your mattress before dragging it through the hallway, down the elevator and across the lobby.