Frequently Asked Questions

Click on a title to view the frequently asked questions for that section.

Questions Answers
When are the proposed changes effective? April 1, 2011
How will I know when my garbage, recycling and yard waste will be picked up? Your hauler will communicate to you the days that each of these services will be provided prior to April 1, 2011. You can also log onto city of Decatur¹s website and click on Decatur Digital atlas to find out your service days.
Will there be alley service? Garbage will continue to be picked up in the alley if a resident currently has alley service. Please call your hauler to see if your recycling will also be picked up in the alley.

Questions Answers
Are there any changes to the rules about recycling as compared to the current program? Yes. You don¹t have to sort the recyclables anymore. They all go into the same bin/cart.  The list of recyclable items has also been
expanded to include cardboard, chipboard (cereal boxes, etc.) and junk mail along with the plastics, metals, paper and glass that are accepted
through the current program.
What type of container can I use for recycling? You may use the 65 gallon blue recycling cart provided by the City, or the 18-gallon plastic bins previously provided to customers.
What days will my recycling be picked up? Check with your individual hauler to determine your recycling pick up day. The schedules will also be listed on the city’s web site at
How can I sign-up for the cart and how much is it? The cart is provided at no additional charge other than your monthly recycling fee.  You can sign-up by calling 424-2784 or  E-Mailing your Name, Phone and Street address to recycling or online at or mail your information to:
Recycling Bin Request
Development Services
#1 Gary K Anderson Plaza
Decatur, IL 62523
When can I receive my recycling cart? Cart delivery will begin on Earth Day, April 22, 2011. The delivery process could take 1-3 weeks depending on the number of people who sign-up. The carts will be delivered to the curbside. Residents who sign-up on or before April 15 can expect their carts by mid-May. Existing red bins may be used until the new carts are delivered. Recyclables can be mixed together even when using the red bins.
What items will be recyclable under the new system? The lid of the cart will contain a specific list of acceptable materials. As a general rule, paper, plastics, metals, glass and cardboard are acceptable through the new program. Hazardous materials, plastic grocery bags, light bulbs, window glass panes, electronics and organic matter are not recyclable.
What if I lose my cart? You can buy a similar cart from Midwest Fiber Recycling.  This cost would not exceed $55.
What should I do with my existing red bin? You can still use the existing bin for recycling or, if you choose not to do so and don’t have another use, you can recycle it.
What is the size of the recycling cart? The cart size is 65 gallons and measures approximately 26²w X 26²l X 41³h.
Can I request a cart, try it and return it if it does not work for me? Yes. People can either call their hauler to return the cart or drop it off themselves at Midwest Fiber here in Decatur.
The mailer I have received says Easier Than Ever, Mix it all Together. Does that mean I can mix my garbage, yard waste and recyclables? No. This just means that you no longer have to sort your recyclables.
I am a small business, church or other non-profit and would like to order a cart. Can I do that? No. At this point the curbside program is only offered to single family households or multifamily dwellings of up to 6 units.  You can, however contact a local commercial recycling service for more options.
I live just outside the City. What are my options for recycling? Macon County has various recycling options. Please refer residents to county¹s website: and click
departments,² and ³Environmental Management for current information on recycling specifics. Or call the County Environmental Management
department at 217-425-6597

Questions Answers
Can I still have twice a week garbage removal? No.  Garbage removal will be once a week.  However, you can either choose Basic Service which will include collection of up to three (3) 32 gallon cans or one (1) 96 gallon toter or Expanded Basic Service which allows for the collection of up to six (6) 32 gallon  cans or two (2) 96 gallon toters. The expanded service provides the same volume of garbage disposal service as twice a week.
Can I still have bag service? Yes.  This service will still be available.
Are there any changes to the list of actual items that can be disposed of as part of the new garbage program? Yes.  Any garbage, other than the environmental hazards, that fits in your can and is less than or equal to the allowable weight (35lbs/can) can be placed in your garbage can for pickup (unlike the current program that prohibits construction and demolition debris).
What type of container can I use for garbage? Metal or impact resistant plastic watertight cans of not less than 15 or more than 32-gallon capacity with tight fitting lids and at least two opposing exterior handles.
Watertight bulk containers with tight fitting covers (carts/toters) not less than 32 gallons or more than 96 gallons and meeting approved standards for automated or semi-automated collection.
Carts/toters may be leased from licensed refuse haulers, purchased from licensed refuse haulers or purchased from an independent source.
Can I still have the option of back door service? Back door service is no longer provided as a standard option, except in cases of valid hardships. However, your hauler can continue to offer such a service and may charge additional fee to do so. The City does not set a rate for back door service.
What happens if I don’t call my hauler and signup? You will be defaulted to a service that most closely resembles your current level of service. Current option Defaulted to Single family Once a week pickup.
Basic Waste removal service + Premium yard waste service option
Single Family Twice a week service  Expanded basic waste removal service + Premium yard waste service

Questions Answers
Can I still have unlimited Yard Waste pick up? Yes.  Both Basic and Expanded Basic service come with unlimited yard waste pickups during beginning April 1 and October 15 and extending for six weeks. However, if you wish to have unlimited yard waste pick up throughout the year, you can subscribe to the Premium Yard Waste option for an extra $1.00/month.
If I sign up for Premium Yard Waste collection, will I have to pay the $1.00 per month even during the winter months when there is no regular yard waste service? Yes, if you want to maintain the Premium yard waste service.
Are there any changes to the rules about Yard Waste Disposal as compared to the current program? No
What type of container can I use for Yard Waste? You may use 33-gallon paper bags designed for composting purposes. Or you may use metal/ impact resistant plastic water-tight cans of not less than 15 or more than 32 gallon capacity with tight fitting lids and at least two opposing exterior handles, marked with an approved yard waste only sticker.

Last update: March 29, 2016