Temple landfill

Waste Management trucks enter Temple Landfill in east Temple.

Temple approved dumping more money into its landfill last week, as fees at its landfill grew along with the city.

Growth — both residential and commercial — resulted in more waste than previously expected being sent to the Temple landfill in fiscal year 2021. The City Council unanimously approved adding $300,000 to its estimated costs for tipping fees this year.

The landfill — while owned by the city — is operated by Waste Management of Texas as part of a 30-year contract signed in 2011.

Last year, the city estimated spending about $2.4 million in tipping fees, with the recent increase bringing that estimated total to $2.7 million.

“The city looks at the overall growth with regards to addition of homes, industry, and large construction sites,” Justin Brantley, director of solid waste, said. The city expects the growth to continue and cost to continue to rise.”

Officials said the city pays about $27.17 per ton of trash sent to the landfill, meaning the city was able to send about 88,942.3 tons to the facility with the previous fees.

The additional money, officials said, would allow the city to dump an estimated 11,041 additional tons of waste. This is a 12.4 percent increase over initial budget projections.

Previously, the city had estimated dumping about 7,411 tons per month for the fiscal year, but now estimates about 8,332 tons per month.

From October 2020 to July of this year, the city dumped about 11,080 tons of residential waste and 49,306 tons of commercial waste.

Brantley said that during this time the landfill received about 460,924 tons of waste from all sources. This included about 93,002 tons from inside the city and about 367,921 tons from other sources outside the city.

The landfill accepts waste from a variety of entities outside of Temple, including nearby counties such as Milam.

Officials said that despite the large amount of waste received each year, Waste Management currently estimates the facility’s lifespan to be about 58 more years.

Cody Weems, spokesman for the city, said any unused money from this $300,000 would go back in to the city’s general fund.

“Our area is growing both commercially and residentially,” Weems said. “Both of those factors have contributed to the in materials being brought to the landfill.”