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Transfer station customers required to prove they live or work in King County’s service area starting June 16

Summary

Beginning June 16, King County Solid Waste Division will require self-haul customers visiting its transfer stations to verify they live or do business within King County’s 37-city and unincorporated service area, which excludes the cities of Seattle and Milton.

Story

To preserve access to essential services for customers within its service area and increase safety at congested recycling and transfer stations, King County Solid Waste Division will enforce an existing rule that requires all self-haul customers to verify they live or do business within King County’s 37 cities and unincorporated areas, which excludes the cities of Seattle and Milton. 

Customers visiting a King County transfer station will be asked to show a government-issued ID, utility bill, rental agreement, vehicle registration, cell phone bill, pay stub or job site invoice with a ZIP Code as proof.

“Our transfer station system saw an increase of almost 25 percent in self-haul customer traffic in 2020 compared to 2019, resulting in longer lines that pushed traffic onto public roadways and potentially posing a safety risk – particularly at our Shoreline and Algona facilities, which are close to the county’s borders,” said Pat McLaughlin, King County Solid Waste Division Director. “We can improve public safety and reduce the strain of self-haul traffic put on critical services intended for our service area customers by enforcing this longstanding rule.”

Under King County Code 10.08.020E, which became law in 1986, waste generated outside the service area cannot be accepted at King County facilities, which is similar to waste disposal rules in other jurisdictions. The only exception is for Seattle residents using the household hazardous waste drop-off services at the Factoria Recycling and Transfer Station in Bellevue.

Verified self-haulers will receive a windshield decal and will not be asked to verify their ZIP Code on subsequent transfer station visits. To assist customers who are turned away, scale operators will provide information for solid waste disposal facilities in Seattle, Pierce and Snohomish counties.

Customers can make their visits more efficient by visiting kingcounty.gov/check-the-line before they leave to see how busy a facility is. Pre-sorting garbage from recycling before arriving at a transfer station can make a trip even more efficient, as well as more cost effective since there is no fee to recycle materials such as paper, cans, glass and plastic.

RELEVANT LINKS

• King County Solid Waste Division: kingcounty.gov/solid-waste
• King County Solid Waste Division Facilities: kingcounty.gov/recycling-transfer


“Our transfer station system saw an increase of almost 25 percent in self-haul customer traffic in 2020 compared to 2019, resulting in longer lines that pushed traffic onto public roadways and potentially posing a safety risk – particularly at our Shoreline and Algona facilities, which are close to the county’s borders. We can improve public safety and reduce the strain of self-haul traffic put on critical services intended for our service area customers by enforcing this longstanding rule.

Pat McLaughlin, Director, King County Solid Waste Division

FOR MORE INFORMATION, CONTACT:
Annie Kolb-Nelson, 206-477-5373

About the King County Solid Waste Division
The Solid Waste Division is guided by its vision to achieve Zero Waste of Resources by 2030, and to enhance the environment through collaboration and innovation. The division operates eight transfer stations, two rural drop boxes, and the Cedar Hills Regional Landfill – the only operational landfill in the county. Our stakeholders include residents and business owners in unincorporated King County and 37 cities throughout the county. Our mission is to deliver value our customers and stakeholders, and to continuously improve waste prevention, resource recovery, and waste disposal.