King County’s Solid Waste Division will now provide transfer station customers with a decal to easily show scale operators they live in or have a business within the service area. In May, King County resumed enforcing an existing policy that requires customers to show proof of residence or business in its service area, which excludes the cities of Seattle and Milton.
Customers who show proof of residence or business within King County’s solid waste service area at a recycling or transfer station will now receive a decal to make subsequent visits more convenient. The decal allows scale operators to readily identify the customer as someone who lives in or does business within King County’s 37-city solid waste service area, which excludes the cities of Seattle and Milton.
Per King County Code, waste generated outside the service area is not accepted at King County facilities. The only exception is for Seattle residents using the household hazardous waste drop-off services at the Factoria Recycling & Transfer Station in Bellevue.
Valid proof of business or residence includes a government-issued ID, a utility bill, a rental agreement, vehicle registration, cell phone bill, or pay stub that shows the customer’s ZIP code. People bringing waste or recycling from other counties will be turned away.
King County’s Solid Waste Division resumed enforcement of the 1986 law after its stations were overwhelmed by an influx of customers when other jurisdictions closed or limited disposal services during the early phase of the COVID-19 pandemic.
In addition to long lines and safety issues, the additional traffic hampered the County’s ability to deliver essential services for its solid waste customers, who pay for the system through usage fees as opposed to taxes. King County Code allows these restrictions, as do most other jurisdictions in this region.
Customers should also be aware that social distancing measures are in place at all King County transfer stations to limit the number of people inside the facility at one time. These include a staggered entry system, and barriers and signage to emphasize the need to stay at least six feet apart.
People can also support Solid Waste Division frontline workers by taking the following actions:
- Practice social/physical distancing by staying at least six feet from others.
- Stay in their vehicle while waiting at the scales.
- Pay with a card rather than cash.
- Wear a cloth mask, which can help prevent the spread of COVID-19, including by those who do not realize they are infected.
Customers exhibiting symptoms of COVID-19, or sharing a household with someone who does, should not visit King County Solid Waste facilities.