Waste & Recycling

The following information is provided for your convenience regarding City sanitation schedules and policies concerning garbage, street trash, recyclables, and yard waste. If you experience any problems with collections or if you have questions about any of this information, please call the Public Works office at 828-652-4224. We will be happy to assist you.

Please be advised that the residential collection schedules are subject to change somewhat during holiday periods throughout the year. Notices of schedule changes are posted in the McDowell News and on the WBRM radio station. If you do not receive any of these media, please call the Public Works office in advance of an upcoming holiday for information on any schedule changes.

Pickup Times

Garbage, recycling, and street trash are all picked up on the same day in your area. Separate crews will work your street at different times, so your garbage may be picked up before your recycling and street trash, or vice versa. Sanitation crews attempt to maintain a regular schedule on every pickup day; however, routes can vary and so can the time that your pickups are made. To ensure that your refuse items are not missed, please have them out by 7 am on your pickup day. You will find a schedule for your area on the following pages.


City health and sanitation ordinances require that all garbage be placed in plastic bags, tied securely, stored in strong, sound cans of maximum 35-gallon capacity, and covered with tight-fitting lids. Garbage cans should have 2 sturdy handles since Sanitation crews must be able to pick up the can and deposit the garbage from the can into the City's container. Garbage cans should be placed at the back or side of the residence.


The City of Marion Residential Recycling Resolution encourages the following recyclable items to be placed in the proper recycling bin for pickup from each residence:

  • Newspaper, magazines, inserts, phone books, paper cores (toilet paper and paper towel rolls), office paper, cereal, and other food boxes, envelopes, paper bags, softcover books, hardcover books (small quantities), food and beverage cartons .
  • Containers: aluminum beverage containers, steel food cans, pet food cans, milk containers Number 1 and Number 2, plastic bottles (not including motor oil, antifreeze or pesticide containers).
  • Glass: food and beverage containers (beer bottles, wine bottles, soda bottles, pasta sauce jar, etc).
  • Soap/detergent bottles, plastic bottles- Number 1 and Number 2.
  • Corrugated cardboard (please fold flat as the County will not accept cardboard that is not broken down).
  • Paper products must be clean with no oil or grease contamination. Plastic and glass containers should also be rinsed before being placed in the recycling bins. Pizza boxes are not accepted for recycling.

The PETE and HDPE numbers are found on or near the bottom of recyclable plastic containers.

Your recyclables should be placed in the recycling bins and set out at the edge of the sidewalk, or if there is no sidewalk, they should be placed at the edge of the street. Please do not place items directly on the sidewalk or on the street. If you have more items that will not properly fit in your bin, please use an additional open, hard container and place it beside your recycling bin. Bagged recyclables cannot be accepted, because of regulations at the facility that accepts the City's recycling. Plastic bags are also not accepted for recycling. The additional containers will be left for you to use again.

Recycling bins are available at City Hall. There is a deposit charge. However, if your area has been annexed into the City, there is no deposit charged for your recycling bin. City Hall is located on the corner of Main Street and New Street, across from the Marion Community Building. The phone number is 828-652-3551.

Street Trash

Street trash, dry refuse, includes household items such as boxes, small appliances, small furniture, toys, books, etc.; generally, items that are not recyclable and that would not be placed in with garbage. These items are to be placed in front of the residence near the edge of the sidewalk or, if there is no sidewalk, they should be placed near the edge of the street. Please do not place items directly on the sidewalk or on the street.

Heavy items may require the arrangement of a special pickup, using extra City equipment, for which there is a minimal charge. Please call the Public Works office if you need to schedule a special pickup or if you have questions as to whether your item(s) will require a special pickup.

Residents may avoid the need for a special pickup by scheduling a utility trailer, which will be brought out at for a fee, and left at the residence for a scheduled period of time. Items are to be loaded onto the trailer by the resident and City crews will pick up the trailer on the scheduled date. Please call the Public Works office to schedule a utility trailer.

Items that cannot be placed curbside and cannot be placed on utility trailers for pickup and disposal include Car motors, building materials, large appliances, car batteries, paint, TV picture tubes, oil drums, hazardous materials, tires, tree stumps, and limbs over 4" diameter.

Please call the Public Works office for information on the disposal of the above items. Click here for Street Trash Schedule.

Yard Waste & Brush

Grass clippings, leaves, and small trimmings are to be bagged and placed near the edge of the sidewalk or edge of the street. Limbs should be placed neatly near the edge of the sidewalk or the edge of the street. Please do not place directly on the sidewalk or street. The City will not remove any trees or limbs over 4" in diameter. The City will not remove any trees, limbs, stumps, or trimmings cut by contractors, or by businesses or non-profit organizations located in residential units eligible to receive yard and brush collection.

We respectfully request that you consider composting your leaves or raking them to an area on your property where they can decompose. However, if you choose not to do so, leaf bags are available at the Public Works office during the months of October, November, and December; free of charge, Monday through Friday, 8 am to 5 pm.

During the months of October, November, and December, City crews operate a leaf vacuum machine for leaf pickup. Residents may rake leaves to the edge of the sidewalk or edge of the street for pickup by the leaf vacuum machine. (Please do not place items directly on the sidewalk or on the street.) The leaf vacuum service is provided only during the months of October, November, and December. At all other times, leaves must be bagged in order to be picked up. 

General Information

Residents are advised of City ordinances prohibiting the placement of refuse items on sidewalks or on streets. All refuse materials that are placed curbside for pickup should not overflow onto the street or sidewalk. If your property is situated in a particular manner that you are not sure where to place items for pickup, please call the Public Works Department and we will be happy to have City personnel come out to your residence and help you locate an area that is accessible for pickup and within the guidelines of City ordinances.

It is necessary that all refuse items placed out for pickup are kept separated according to the type of material they are. Examples: yard waste should not be mixed with street trash, metal should not be mixed with wood, garbage should not be mixed with recyclables, etc. City Sanitation crews run each route of locations on a regular basis and make every effort to pick up all refuse items that have been placed out in a timely manner.

However, if you have street trash or yard waste items that you plan to place out for pickup, you may want to call the Public Works office at 828-652-4224 the day before your scheduled pickup day so that a work order can be issued, especially if you do not regularly have these types of items for pickup. A telephone call is not mandatory; it is only a helpful suggestion.

Your Public Works Department is happy to assist you and we make every effort to provide timely and competent sanitation service. Please call our office at 828-652-4224 anytime you have questions, comments, or problems regarding garbage, street trash, recycling, or yard waste pickups.