L.A.’s New Recycling Program Has More Than 28,000 Complaints for Missed Trash Pickups

L.A.’s commercial-trash customers have filed more than 28,000 reports of missed collections since July, the latest sign of a turbulent roll-out for the city’s new recycling program.

A man who works for Athen Services trash company moves a bin to where it will be picked up in West L.A. in this undated photo. (Credit: Mel Melcon / Los Angeles Times)

A man who works for Athen Services trash company moves a bin to where it will be picked up in West L.A. in this undated photo. (Credit: Mel Melcon / Los Angeles Times)

The numbers, compiled by the Bureau of Sanitation and provided to The Times, show that RecycLA has been seeing significant month-to-month increases in garbage pickup complaints.

Since its debut, Mayor Eric Garcetti has promoted the program — which gives seven companies the exclusive right to pick up trash and recycling at roughly 70,000 businesses, large apartment buildings and condominium complexes — as a way to boost recycling, take high-polluting trash trucks off the road and improve conditions of refuse workers.

At the same time, however, trash bills have soared for some customers, many of whom are being charged extra when haulers open locked gates or pull bins longer distances to the curb. City inspectors have identified hundreds of inaccurate charges. And refuse company executives have been at odds with sanitation officials over how trash bills are calculated.

Read the full story on LATimes.com.