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Controversial trash tax may be slated for Miyako Jima

Date Posted: 2006-12-28

The 20,000 tons of refuse created each year on Miyako Island are processed free of charge at landfills.

That could change next year with adoption of a controversial payment charge being instituted. The local Administration and Finance Reform Committee is pushing a plan to begin charging for trash handled by the city. The proposal would generate ¥80~100 million annually.

The committee thinks the disposal fee would reduce the amount of trash tossed away, causing many citizens to use recycle systems. The Miyako Jima City Mayor, Akira Ishimine, says the plan would create charges of ¥15~30 per bag of garbage, and would require stickers be issued for large size items being discarded.

The mayor warns, though, that “Unlawful dumping could happen because of the system. I want citizens to be enlightened, and to make efforts to keep Miyako beautiful.” Ishimine says the new tax would allocate money to cover maintenance management costs, environmental cleanup charges, and provide money to support volunteer projects.

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