News Blog for Seattle's Maple Leaf Neighborhood


Second week of policed garbage pickup

January 6th, 2015 by Mike

Update from Seattle Public Utilities:

At 10 a.m. on Wednesday, Jan. 7, 600 lucky Seattle residents who pledge to recycle and compost will receive a Collector’s Edition Seattle Mariners Kitchen Caddy at the following locations:

Lake City Neighborhood Service Center at 12525 28th Avenue Northeast, Seattle, WA 98125

– See more at:


As Maple Leaf enters its second week of trash checking, we’re interested in hearing about neighbors’ experiences.

After our first post on the new trash enforcement, one commenter noted:

I am conscientious when it comes to putting the proper items in the trash, as are all the neighbors on my block. Lo and behold, every trash bin on the block was red tagged today. The Trash Police did not specify what exactly was placed in the trash in error. So we get to move forward not knowing what was improperly tossed, and fines are the next step.

This did not seem to be the case on many blocks (we looked).

But this week KUOW has a story featuring Maple Leaf trash: “Seattle’s scarlet letter for sloppy trash sorters.”

The public radio station talked with Rodney Watkins, a lead driver for CleanScapes.

As Watkins made the rounds in Maple Leaf recently, he appeared disheartened to find an entire red velvet cake in someone’s trash bin. Any house with more than 10 percent food in their garbage earned a bright red tag notifying them of the infraction.

“Right now I’m tagging probably every fifth can,” Watkins said. “I don’t know if that’s just the holidays, or the fact that I’m actually paying a lot more attention.”

Right now the tags are just a warning, but fines will apply beginning in July. For single households, $1 – but apartments, condos and commercial buildings could be fined $50.

More information from Seattle Public Utilities is here. KUOW says Seattle is the first city in the country to fine people for not properly sorting their garbage.

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No trash pickup Christmas Day – PLUS the Garbage Police cometh

December 24th, 2014 by Mike

Welcome to Christmas Eve! And a gray one, at that. (1.22 inches of rain in last 24 hours.)

Two things:

From Seattle Public Utilities: “No garbage, yard waste or recycling collections are scheduled in Seattle on Thursday, Dec. 25.

“Thursday and Friday collections will be collected one day later that week due to the Christmas Day holiday. Please be sure to have your containers available by 7 a.m., to ensure collection.”

Also, beginning a week from Thursday the city gets tough on trash.

From our news partner The Seattle Times:

Starting Jan. 1, food scraps, pizza boxes and paper napkins won’t be allowed in garbage cans. For the first six months, violators will get notices from the city; after that period, violators will be fined $1.

It gets more complicated, but, yes: “Drivers will be watching for the materials and will inform the city about violators”

The Times’ story is here. Many, many comments on it are here.

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Maple Leaf – and our neighbors – wins $50,000 project

February 27th, 2014 by Mike

Congratulations, Maple Leaf.

We – and our neighbors Victory Heights, Pinehurst and Northgate – won a $50,000 community project for being really good about recycling.

The CleanScapes “Thursday North” collection area won the 2013 Neighborhood Waste Reduction Rewards competition and will receive a $50,000 community improvement project.

Between now and April 15, 2014, Seattle residents have the opportunity to submit project proposals for construction in the “Thursday North” collection area. Representatives from the neighborhood community councils in the “Thursday North” area will recommend the winning project(s) to CleanScapes using the criteria below.

For background, see our previous post: “No way are we more trashy than Ravenna.” [Read more →]

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Free tree-cycling until January 9th

December 27th, 2010 by sarawilly

The city is offering free curbside “tree-cycling” until January 9th for customers who subscribe to curbside food and yard waste collection.

Trees and greens need to be cut into sections of no more than six feet with branches trimmed to less than four feet to fit into the collection trucks. Sections of trees should be bundled together with string or twine. Apartment and condo residents can put one tree next to each yard waste bin with no extra charge.

Flocked trees or trees with tinsel on them will be collected as extra garbage. These trees must be cut into three-foot pieces and each piece will be charged as extra garbage. (Just a reminder that starting on January 1, each extra unit of garbage will cost $8.10.)

Residents who don’t subscribe to food and yard waste collection can drop trees and greens at the North Recycling and Disposal station (North 34th Street and Carr Place N) from December 26th through January 9th. Tree sections must be cut into sections eight feet or less with trunks four inches or smaller in diameter. One vehicle can drop off three trees.

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Coupon on its way for a free 'Green Kitchen Kit'

March 29th, 2010 by sarawilly

Check your mailbox this week for a coupon for a free “Green Kitchen Kit,” which should arrive in your CurbWaste and Conserve newsletter. The kits, which feature an EcoSafe Kitchen Collector (shown at right) and compostable bags for storing food scraps, a food scraper, a CFL light bulb and a reusable shopping bag, can be picked up starting April 15 at two nearby Neighborhood Service Centers: Lake City, 12525 28th Ave. N.E. (second floor); and the University District, 4534 University Way N.E.

“Green Kit giveaways are part of Compost Days, April 15-May 30, when Seattle Public Utilities, Cedar Grove and Seattle City Light and our community partners are making these special offers to Seattle residents to say ‘thank you’ for helping make our city even better through your recycling and composting efforts,” the Seattle Public Utilities’ Web site states.

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