The Big Roll Out

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Trash Service Zones
Mayor Greg Whitlock sat down with Brad Martin from Republic Services to discuss the change from bags to carts for trash collection. Check out the video below to get all of your trash-related questions answered as we prepare for The Big Rollout on May 1, 2024.



Who made the decision to switch to carts from bags?
The bag system is being phased out industry-wide. Staffing two-man trucks has been difficult, and with increasing traffic concerns, helpers riding on the backs of trucks is becoming more unsafe.
What is the cost?
This service does not incur an additional cost, taxes are not anticipated to increase as a result of the transition from bags to bins, and you will not be receiving a bill from Republic Services.

The City has been subsidizing the bag system for over a year and a half, as the purchased bags did not cover the cost of the service. The cost of the cart service is covered by the city’s millage rate, which also supports other essential services like police and public works. As these services are part of the collective investment in our community, refunds for non-usage are not available.

What if I am unable to roll my bin out to the curb?
If you have concerns about safely transporting your bin to and from the curb, please email a completed copy of the Non-Curbside Residential Collection Service Request Form to Please note, this service does require a doctor's sign off.
Do we still need to use the purple bags?
Trash will need to be bagged inside of the bins, but you are not required to buy special bags for this. Standard kitchen trash bags will do the trick!
Can we return our extra bags?
No, Republic Services will not be offering refunds.

We recommend repurposing your unused bags. For example, larger bags can be used to bag yard debris.
Do trash bins need to be hidden?
The City of Duluth does not require your trash carts to be out of sight when stored. Per Muni. Sec. 13-20: All containers, when stored, shall not be on public rights-of-way and shall be located to not interfere, block, obstruct or impede the normal use of any sidewalk, street, alley driveway or fire lane, or to block, obstruct or impede sight distance at street, road, or alley intersections.

If you live in an HOA community, we recommend checking with them on neighborhood rules.
Will there be two separate bins? One for recycle and one for trash?
Yes, but recycling is not mandatory. If you do not wish to keep a recycling cart, send an email to with your address. They will add you to the cart pick-up route, but please note that they may still deliver two carts to start.
I already have a small recycling bin. What should I do with that?
You have a few options:
1. You can keep the small bin and repurpose it.
2. You can recycle the bin.
3. You can leave it at the curb starting May 1, 2024, and Republic Services will pick it up while on their normal route.
4. The 18 gallon recycle bins will no longer be usable as the automated trucks that they will be using cannot pick them up.
When should I start using the carts?
Republic Services will begin cart collection the week of May 1. 
What if I already have a large rolling cart for Recycling?
Republic Services is planning to deliver two carts to every household, unless you already have a recycling cart. If you receive a second recycling cart by mistake, please send an email to with your address.

The 18-gallon recycle bins will no longer be usable as the automated trucks they will use cannot pick them up.

What do I do with my bulk items and yard waste?
Residents can call Republic Services at 678.963.2873 to set up yard waste service or request a bulk Item for pickup. The cost is $65 for each bulk pickup request (limit to two items per service week). The cost for yard waste is $156 annually (limit to 10 bags per service week).

If you prefer, Public Works also has bulk and yard waste drop-off service available for all city residents. Dumpster information can be found at
Can I opt-out of this service?
You can choose to opt out of recycling. After May 1, 2024, you are welcome to contact Republic Services to have your recycling cart picked up. Please note that if you decide later to return the cart, there will be a $75 re-delivery fee. 

You may not opt out of trash collection services. You may choose to dispose of your trash elsewhere and not roll your cart to the curb, but Republic Services will not take away your trash cart.

Please note, the Public Works facility does not accept household garbage, (any item that is disposed of in your kitchen or bathroom trash {e.g. food waste, coffee grounds, food packaging, paper, etc} or that will fit in the purple bags for pickup at curbside) – is not accepted.  The curbside garbage service is designed for the disposal of your household garbage.
What day will my trash be picked up?

Starting April 29, 2024, trash collection will shift from a 3-day a week schedule to a 5-day a week schedule. To assist residents with the transition, Republic Services will be sending out postcards to every resident the week of April 15, providing details on their designated pickup day. This notification will be sent to all residents, even if their pickup day remains unchanged. The color-coded map outlines the service days for each area. Click the map to enlarge.