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YOUR TURN: Should Malden Ditch Blue Bags?

The unpopular program is being reviewed by a mayoral task force. What's your best idea for replacing the program?

Pay As You Throw is one of the most frequent gripes our readers have about city hall - whether the cost or the flimsiness of the bags, citizens have long clamored for an alternative to the model.

Mayor Gary Christenson made campaign promises to change the system, and told readers during his Monthly Online Forum he had recently established a task force of interested citizens to brainstorm ways of changing the system.

He added their alternative proposals will be presented to the public sometime before the end of the year. 

But, until then, we wanted to ask you - what's your best solution for dealing with Malden's trash? Is there a nearby city you think does it better? Something completely off the wall?

Share your ideas with decision-makers and other residents in our comments section below.

allamericancity1967 October 01, 2012 at 10:18 PM
I'm going to go out on a limb here and guess.....you don't own property in Malden?
Kelley October 01, 2012 at 10:49 PM
No All America I do own a lovely home in Malden.
Kelley October 01, 2012 at 10:52 PM
And we'll all have to agree on a color too. :)
robert wilson October 02, 2012 at 12:21 AM
yes Lynette, one more burr under the saddle. :)
fivekids5 October 02, 2012 at 10:50 AM
Every politician in City Hall knows this program has been a complete disaster since they jammed it down our throats. So why are they wasting our time asking for ways we think it should be fixed, They chose to break what worked, just fix it.
Steve C. October 02, 2012 at 12:09 PM
Nice citizen...What else do you dump in other cities and towns....
Bobby James October 02, 2012 at 12:43 PM
Mayor Howhard signed a nice little sweetheart deal of a 20 year extension with JRM during his "mailing it in" tour. Have to leave a legacy!
Andrew25 October 02, 2012 at 05:02 PM
The wealthy avoid this tax by taking their trash with them?! This is a joke right? And there is no way you're paying a 30% income tax rate unless you're a "1%er", which is doubtful from the looks of this post.
Democrat2000 October 02, 2012 at 05:09 PM
Mike G, Really? It matters to me, as I welcome the opportunity to have my voice be heard again in the community. 8,507 people voted in 2009, and 68% voted against the bag. The local government does realize, that still after four years-signatures were collected in 2008, the blue bag is an issue.But people like you and I must stay engaged with government to let them know we still care about a topic. I have many ideas that I want to share with my many fellow citizens-espicially the nearly eight thousand people that signed the petition. I am many things Mike, but a cadre? No a person that in five years learned about the ordinances of the city, the yearly budgets and sat in on over two hundred of the city council's subcommittee meetings. So if I am a cadre of residents, then I welcome meeting my fellow PAYT advocates today...
Democrat2000 October 02, 2012 at 05:19 PM
David, In 2009 we appeared on Fox News with you on a national feed against it. I have an idea about the long-term solution....if anyone wants to get reacquinted with us please review our blog: http://maldentax.blogspot.com/ I do believe that all attempts should be made to work with the local government...I can make that statement as I put alot of my time (hundreds and may thousands), organizing the campaign on Question One, then attending city council meetings... rmiller4freedom@gmail.com if anyone wants to contact me....
AnnieOMalden October 02, 2012 at 05:35 PM
If you like the blue bag tax, you're gonna LOVE the parking sticker scam! More jobs for friends and family! Making government bigger...thank you Malden City Council and Administration!
Andrew25 October 02, 2012 at 06:10 PM
I like the parking sticker idea.... I'm shocked we disagree on this!:)
Andrew25 October 02, 2012 at 06:14 PM
Just so we're clear... I hate the bag tax but if they could get at least 50% of the trash Into the truck I could learn to live with it.
Paula Spizziri October 02, 2012 at 06:31 PM
Putting out trash bags overnight, not in containers, was a problem before the blue bags and is independent of it. I don't use a trash barrel, but I put my bag out in the morning to avoid having them torn apart by animals.
Paula Spizziri October 02, 2012 at 06:34 PM
Stop and Shop still sells the bags. You just have to ask for them at the checkout now.
AnnieOMalden October 02, 2012 at 06:42 PM
A25: The "idea" of the sticker is fine but the devil is in the details...lol
Joe Gray October 02, 2012 at 08:11 PM
Not wealthy. Struggling to pay mortgage every month. Never purchased a blue bag... EVER. Toss the stinky trash in the back of my car and end up at work smelling like I crawled out of trash can... Not sure where the property tax money that I'm paying is going. I believed some of it was supposed to cover trash pickup. I believed wrong.
david mokal October 02, 2012 at 08:57 PM
That is true so we must becareful what we wish for.Is it true that Mayor Howard signed a 20 contract with JRM ? I never heard of such a thing like this. Five years tops.
Craig October 03, 2012 at 01:52 AM
These “little blue bags” have indeed made us all more aware of the cost of our trash & added responsibility on the individuals. I do prefer to have trash, recycling and garbage costs kept separate from our taxes; and to “pay as I go”. I would prefer to be able to drop off my trash though, and it would be ideal for those likeminded to have the option to drop off their bags on a set day weekly. This would keep it off my street/sidewalk & prevent the “rummagers” from opening my bags & leaving it all over the sidewalk. But the bottom line is how are we going to pay for our trash removal - & I want it the most cost effective way possible & I want to have better control of what my cost is going to be.
Lori Sullivan October 03, 2012 at 06:23 PM
Yard waste pickup is not every week, all weeks. It goes every week for a period of time (late spring/early summer and again in early fall for leaves) and then every so often. You can get the info on-line on when the pickup is, so you can put it out when you know it will be picked up. The yard waste pick up is not inconsistent. You just have to know when it is, and that info is available. I believe I even saw the schedule in the Malden Patch.
Lori Sullivan October 03, 2012 at 06:27 PM
Lynette, I don't know where you get your info from. Stop and Shop does still sell the bags and no one can just open a box and steal bags. Can't happen. They are purchased at the service counters. You have to buy the box, to actually get the box. Thereby, you'd be stealing your own bags.
Kelley October 03, 2012 at 08:42 PM
Lori-My mistake about S&S not selling the bags. What I meant to say was that at one time the bags were accessible on the aisles. I was told they had to move them BECAUSE of the thefts. People were taking one or two bags at a time. The manager confirmed this to me as well as the fact that people would then sell the bags at the Revere Flea Market.
MARY D SCOTT October 04, 2012 at 09:00 PM
The town that I previously lived in had a system that you paid a small yearly fee for stickers that you placed on your trashbags and then each steet had assigned days when they took their bags to the town dump. This seemed to work well in the town of Ayer.
MARY D SCOTT October 04, 2012 at 09:02 PM
I do not think Maldens system is working well
Northwood October 08, 2012 at 09:45 PM
if the bags are working....then why is the city so filthy....trash...litter on every conner ..under every tree....people don't want to buy bags!
david mokal October 08, 2012 at 10:03 PM
Middle Income thank you finally some see's what I do. Ive seen small rinky dink contractors tossing them into the housing dumpsters. This has been nothing but bullcrap for a long time. A 20 year sweetheart contract? This cant be true. thats probably why we get the ratty lookin trucks running the city.
david mokal October 08, 2012 at 10:05 PM
Annie what happened to the trash police?
Bk Gundisu January 15, 2013 at 12:53 AM
The trash bags are really expensive compared to other normal trash bags.. GET RID OF BLUE TRASH BAGS.....
Tony H. January 15, 2013 at 01:15 AM
I agree with Meggle AND I own property in Malden. Amazing, right?
jirkyrick January 15, 2013 at 03:04 AM
As far as the recycle bins go, you don't have to use the stoopid and woefully to small bins the city provided. They have stickers that you can place on barrels , one for paper and one for mixed (plastic and cans). Yeh you have to sort it where no other city does, but it is better than the small recycle bins. I haven't any idea why the city did not put one in the original mailing that included one sample blue bag.... This again shows how inept the lat mayor was....they don't even publicize that the stickers are available for your own barrels for recyclables

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