As was seen in Bountiful, once government becomes involved, everyone is forced to pay for a special interest group (and create a government-protected monopoly). When Centerville indicated that it would mandate recycling but provide a way to opt out for residents, I warned that citizens would have watch the city council like a hawk:
The council is also considering a 50 cent offset for residents that remain with the recycling program, which the city would pay for out of its own funds…
…“I think it’s great for the city to be subsidizing some of that,” said council member Justin Allen. All total, the subsidy would cost the city $22,650 a year, much of which the city would pull out of collected reserves.
In other words, the city council is looking at using your tax money to subsidize a special interest group’s costs (especially if a bunch of people opt-out – see the article). Maybe better than forcing full payment by all, but it is still inappropriate. As usual, a weakened economy with increased unemployment doesn’t faze government from taking money to benefit the wants of the few. At least the mayor acknowledged that the service is costly and unnecessary:
“Recycling is a service to residents, and I think that’s how we should see it,” said Centerville Mayor Ronald Russell. “If we’re worried about money, the easiest, cheapest thing to do is to take the garbage someplace and bury it.”