Port Coquitlam is joining other municipalities in Metro Vancouver in calling on the province to rethink new recycling regulations slated to take effect in 2014.
The city is asking for a more equitable share of how the recycling of paper and packaging items will be handled, in light of new provincial regulations that put the onus on paper and packaging companies to get rid of those blue box items themselves.
The trouble for Port Coquitlam and many others is the fact that council feels its own municipal garbage collection policies are well established, and they work.
In other words, "If ain't broke, don't fix it," according to Coun. Brad West.
"Taxpayers in Port Coquitlam and other municipalities are funding these services," he said.
"If industry has been made responsible for this by the provincial government and has been made financially responsible for it, it's unfair for that responsibility and the financial implications of it to be shifted onto Port Coquitlam taxpayers."
The province changed regulations around packaging and printed paper in May 2011, in a move that puts the burden of responsibility on the industries involved.
The province and members of those industry groups created an organization known as Multi Material British Columbia (MMBC), which has been tasked with developing and implementing a program to take ownership of printed and packaged materials.
Two options proposed by MMBC include contracting out those services - though municipalities could serve as contractors - or providing financial incentive for processors, like transfer stations or recycling depots.
Further requirements stipulate that MMBC account for 70 per cent of all printed and packaged materials.
"Our fear is that we might already collect more than that and if they bring a new system in, it might erode what we're already doing as a high-quality system," said Mayor Greg Moore.
"Fund us. Fund the local government that's already doing a really good job of doing it to continue that and hopefully it expands to allow more materials to go into an already good and high-quality system."
Originally proposed by the City of Vancouver, PoCo council endorsed Monday's resolution unanimously.