Yardwaste Frequently Asked Questions

Yardwaste

INSIDE your waste cart, yes you may use plastic bags for your yard waste.  OUTSIDE your waste cart, No.  Yardwaste not in a cart must be placed in paper yardwaste bags.

 

No, there isn’t a limit but depending on the time of year it will either cost you $2 per paper yardwaste bag (a sticker is needed on each bag), or it will be free.  The free period will be a limited time of six weeks in the spring and six weeks in the fall when FCC will run separate yardwaste routes that will pick up paper yardwaste bags and deliver the material to the Oma-Gro facility for composting.  You will note that only paper yardwaste bags are mentioned.  No trash cans of any kind will be allowed other than your official City of Omaha waste cart.  

Adding season-long yardwaste collection was too costly for the city’s budget.  Instead, the City opted to provide separate yardwaste collection during the peak seasons in the spring and the fall when there will be six weeks during each period when unlimited yardwaste will be collected and composted.  At other times yardwaste is collected with garbage for a combined waste stream.

The Cooperative Extension can help you understand your landscaping and maintenance options, but here are four brochures to get you started related to reducing the amount of grass you collect.

Your choice.  Remove the pot and it’s yardwaste.  Pot and all, it’s garbage.

Should I bag my garbage before placing it in my waste cart? While it’s not required, we highly encourage you to bag your garbage just like you used to. Now any type of bag will do — store carryout bags, store bought kitchen bags or black bags. The bags help keep your cart clean, which prevents it from emitting odors and attracting pests. And it helps prevent litter on those extremely windy Nebraska days. Yardwaste doesn’t need to be bagged when it’s in the cart.

You may place the plastic pumpkin bags inside your waste cart, however we recommend placing the leaves loose in your waste cart so you can fit more in the cart. We also recommend that you put a bag of garbage in the cart first (yardwaste alone has a tendency to pack in tight and not fall out).  Plastic bags of yard waste outside the cart are not accepted.

There’s a plan for yardwaste bags! For six weeks in the spring and six weeks in the fall (the peak times for generating yardwaste), a separate yardwaste only truck will come around on collection day and pick up paper yardwaste bags at no extra charge for the service. They will pick up paper yardwaste bags only; no cans or plastic bags. During the rest of the year, you have to purchase yardwaste stickers for your yardwaste paper bags. The cost is $2 per sticker, and each bag must have its own sticker. For a list of stores where you can purchase these stickers, visit wasteline.org/mycart.

If the bales are still in good shape so that someone else could use them, place them on the curb with a sign that says FREE. If not picked up in a couple days, be a good neighbor and dispose of them this next way.

Properly prepare the material for yardwaste collection. Because the bales are likely too heavy, you will need to break apart the bales of straw for collection. Put the straw in paper yardwaste bags, or loose in a trash can.  We recommend that you put yardwaste in the cart loose so you fit the most in. We also recommend that you put a bag of garbage in the cart first (yardwaste alone has a tendency to pack in tight and not fall out).

During the few weeks following Christmas, there are Christmas tree collection sites.  Haul the tree to these sites the same way you got the tree to your home. For more information about the Christmas tree drop-off sites, click here.  Once these sites close, or if you choose at any time, you may prepare the tree for collection as yardwaste by trimming the branches and either bundling or placing in paper yardwaste bags or loose in trash cans.  Be aware that the trunk may be too large for yardwaste collection.

No.  We consider those things household garbage because they have a lot of wire, twine and other decorations incorporated into them.  

No.  We consider those things household garbage.

While it’s not required, we highly encourage you to bag your garbage just like you used to. Now any type of bag will do — store carryout bags, store bought kitchen bags or black bags. The bags help keep your cart clean, which prevents it from emitting odors and attracting pests. And it helps prevent litter on those extremely windy Nebraska days. Yardwaste doesn’t need to be bagged when it’s in the cart.  We also recommend that you put a bag of garbage in the cart first (yardwaste alone has a tendency to pack in tight and not fall out).

You CANNOT use your old garbage cans for waste that doesn’t fit in your waste cart, but you CAN lease an additional 96 gallon waste cart from FCC Environmental. The annual cost is $91. It must be paid in advance and includes delivery. Also, if your home has more than five family members living in it, the City of Omaha will provide you with an additional 96 gallon waste (or recycling) cart at no cost to you.  You must accept and use both the waste and recycling cart to qualify for the large family additional cart. There is a registration form for this service available at wasteline.org/mycart, or call 402-444-5238 for the form to be mailed to you.

There’s a plan for that! For six weeks in the spring and six weeks in the fall (the peak times for generating yardwaste), a separate yardwaste only truck will come around on collection day and pick up paper yardwaste bags at no extra charge for the service. They will pick up paper yardwaste bags only; no cans or plastic bags. During the rest of the year, you have to purchase yardwaste stickers for your yardwaste paper bags. The cost is $2 per sticker, and each bag must have its own sticker. For a list of stores where you can purchase these stickers, https://wasteline.org/yardwaste-sticker-locations/

No. The recycling cart is for recycling only and it is important to not contaminate the contents with other wastes. Repeated misuse of the recycling cart may result in it being removed.

YES! Starting the week of November 30, you can’t use anything but the carts provided. No garbage cans and no green bins. You can’t use look-alike carts, either. By look-alike, we mean carts that retailers sell that look like the City of Omaha’s new collection carts. The big difference? They aren’t marked with the official City of Omaha seal. FCC Environmental WILL NOT collect your waste and recyclables if you don’t place them in the carts you received from the City of Omaha. It’s that simple!

An occasional rinse with a hose is all that should be needed to keep it clean and free from attracting pests.

If you can repurpose your old garbage can, that would be great!

You can also place your old garbage can in the black lid waste cart if you can still close the cart’s lid.

Yes. Some retailers sell carts that look like the City of Omaha’s new collection carts. The big difference? They aren’t marked with the official City of Omaha seal. FCC Environmental WILL NOT collect your waste and recyclables if you don’t place them in the carts you received from the City of Omaha. It’s that simple.

The new wheeled carts help automate the collection process, which will increase collection efficiency and help avoid worker injury. It standardizes the collection so everyone gets an equal and fair amount. Most cities Omaha’s size have already transitioned to an automated collection system. It’s time to join them and enjoy the benefits of a modernized system.

The new waste collection vehicles have a mechanism that lifts the carts and dumps the contents into the truck. Where possible, the collection will be completed without a worker outside the cab of the truck — again, for efficiency and safety.

The week of November 30, 2020 and no sooner! Your collection day won’t change. For example, if your collection day is Thursday, your waste cart will be collected Thursday, December 3 and every Thursday after that. Your recycling cart will be collected every other week according to your current schedule. If you are unsure of your collection day and recycling week, visit doc.wasteline.org.

The time has not changed. Your carts should be put out before 6:00AM on your collection day. You must remove your carts by 10:00AM the day after your collection day.

Carts should be placed directly at the curb or roadway and AT LEAST three feet apart from each other or other objects (like trees, mailboxes, lamp posts and parked cars) so the mechanism on the truck can reach each cart. The cart handle should be toward your house.

If cars park in front or there are objects in the way, the truck driver will determine if they need to get out of the truck and move the cart so that they can empty it.

FCC is collecting until 7:00 PM each day.  Any missed collections should be reported to the City’s Solid Waste Helpline, 402-444-5238.

All City of Omaha carts have a serial number and an electronic RFID tag, so the carts that were delivered to your home have been “assigned” to your address. If your cart is found in another location, it can be returned to the address it was assigned to – yours! If we don’t know where it is, you will also likely be referred to the Police Department’s non-emergency number to report a minor property crime.

If your cart is stolen please follow these steps.

Step 1: File a police report. Online at https://police.cityofomaha.org/incident-form or call the non-emergency number (402) 444-4877.

Step 2: Once you have your police report number then call us at 402-444-5238.

 

Stolen Cart Information

 

You are responsible for protecting (and not abusing) your carts. In the case of damage due to normal wear and tear, your cart will be repaired at no cost to you. Be smart about what you place in your cart. If, for example, you put hot coals in your cart, you will have to pay for its repair or replacement. To report a damaged cart, please call 402-444-5238.

If you have five or more family members in your home, you can be provided with an additional 96 gallon cart at no charge. There is a registration form for this service available at wasteline.org/mycart, or call 402-444-5238 for the form to be mailed to you.  You must accept and use both the waste and recycling carts to qualify for the additional large family cart. For all other situations, FCC Environmental will lease households an additional 96 gallon cart for a fee. The annual cost of an additional waste (remember, garbage + yardwaste = waste) cart is $91, and the annual cost of an additional recycling cart is $45.50. You must pay in advance, and the fee includes delivery. The information for leasing a cart is available at wasteline.org/mycart or by calling 402-444-5238.

Great question! The carts have been “assigned” to your address, so you simply leave them at your old home. Carts will be waiting for you at your new home — good luck with the move!

Nothing can be placed outside of carts other than yardwaste bags and bundles, and lids on the carts must be able to fully close.

The Oma-Gro facility, 15705 Harlan Lewis Road in Bellevue, also accepts yard waste.

2020/2021 Yardwaste stickers are available for purchase and can be used immediately. If you want yardwaste picked up that does not fit in your waste cart you will need a yardwaste sticker for each brown bag. Please read the rules on the sticker for proper placement.

NO, do not paint or damage your new carts. Each cart is equipped with an electronic chip that ties the cart to the residence where it was delivered. If you move homes, the carts stay behind.

Yes, but the city is asking people to try out the 96-gallon carts for three months. At that time, you can request carts that are half the size of the big ones.

The city also offers a program for people who need assistance with their waste collection. Residents who are 70 or older, or have a verified medical need, can request that crews collect their carts from a location of their choice — near their house, for example.

People interested in the program can call 402-444-5238 to register.

Families of five or more can request an extra trash or recycling cart at no cost. To get one, you must fill out a form, get it notarized and send it to the city.

The stickers, which cost $1.98 plus tax, will be sold at Hy-Vee, Family Fare, Supermercado Nuestra Familia, Westlake Ace Hardware, Ideal Hardware and Menards locations.

Here is a link to the locations:

Yardwaste Sticker Locations And Instructions

Yes, the driver will get out and move the cart so that they can pick it up with the truck arms. Do your best to space the carts 18 inches apart on the side of the road or in the area between the road and the sidewalk. It is best to have 18 inches around all sides of the carts so that the arms on the truck can pick up the carts without any problems.

Lease an extra cart from FCC. Waste cart is $91 per year and Recycle is $45.50 per year. Email omaha@fccenvironmental.com.

The next special unlimited yardwaste period will be in the Spring 2021. Check the website for updates.

2020/2021 Yardwaste stickers are available for purchase and can be used immediately. If you want yardwaste picked up that does not fit in your waste cart you will need a yardwaste sticker for each brown bag. Please read the rules on the sticker for proper placement.

More details here: https://wasteline.org/yard-waste-information/

Collections will remain in the same area you placed the carts in the past.

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