Talent, Ashland and southern Jackson county residents will be switched to quarterly billing for waste disposal services in January in a move that will give the service provider a $24,000 annual savings in postage.

Talent, Ashland and southern Jackson county residents will be switched to quarterly billing for waste disposal services in January in a move that will give the service provider a $24,000 annual savings in postage.

"By controlling costs, we are hoping to keep the rate increases under control," said Steve DeFabion, general manger for Recology Ashland Sanitary Service. "This is a win-win all the way around."

Recology purchased Ashland Sanitary Service Inc. in October. The firm, which serves 38 cities and six counties in Northern California, has quarterly billing in all its other locations. Until now local customers received monthly bills and could only pay by mail or drop-off.

Besides the postage savings, the change will result in use of about 56,000 fewer sheets of paper and 56,000 envelopes per year. Customers will also be offered options that will include online billing, online payment by credit card and automatic withdrawal from checking or savings accounts.

A letter and pamphlet explaining payment options will be mailed to customers within the next week, said DiFabion. He asked that those with questions call Recology at 482-1471.

While the bills will be mailed in early January, the amount is not past due until after March 31, said DiFabion. Rates per can, which will not increase, are $16.61 per month in the towns and $15.63 in the county. On a quarterly basis that $49.83 and $46.89, respectively.

— Tony Boom, for the Mail Tribune