Malden Trash Fee Petition (2009)

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The Malden Trash Fee Petition was a petition created by a citizens group, called the Malden Taxpayers of Accountability, hoping to get a trash fee removed or a question to be put on the November 3, 2009 ballot in Middlesex County, Massachusetts. The petition had 5,114 certified signatures of registered voters, more than double the amount required by the city's charter. The charter requires 8 percent, or about 2,500 of the city's estimated 27,000 registered voters, according to city officials.[1]

Election result

Malden Trash Fee Petition
Result Votes Percentage
Approveda Yes 5,762 67.72%
No 2160 32.28%
Total votes 8508 100.00%
Voter turnout 30%


Reasons for petitions

Committee chairman Neil Kinnon stated that the program, Pay-As-You-Throw, hasn't met its potential financial goal. Revenues are expected to be $1.2 million by June 30, the end of the current fiscal year.

‘‘That’s significantly lower than expected, said Kinnon, who voted against the program

Under the program, residents are required to purchase City of Malden 33 gallon trash bags at a cost of $2 per trash bag with 10 bags to a box. Weekly recycling is also mandated. The program started on October 6, 2008, at which time the taxpayers group was circulating a petition. "We are not opposed to recycling at all, said Robert Miller, chairman of the Malden Taxpayers for Accountability, "We wonder why the city needs a trash bag tax"[3]

Path to the ballot

The full council has until June 15 to act on the petition. Council president Craig Spadafora expects the 11-member board will vote in favor of scheduling a voter referendum.

Official petition text

The Chapter 9 of the Revised Ordinances of 1991 that affects the Solid Waste Management Policy of the City of Malden as amended are hereby further amended in :
  • Strike out Fees for collection of residential waste
  • Strike out Approved trash bags $2.00 ea.
  • Strike out Approved trash bags shall be made available at the Office of the City Treasurer and the Department of Public Works Office during regular business hours. Approved trash bags shall also be made available for resale to the public at retail and commercial establishments as determined by the Director of Public Works; provided that no retail or commercial establishment shall charge more than $2.00 for each approved trash bag[4]

External links