Waste & Recycling Issues

Carton Recycling Public Dump
Recycling Newsletter Holiday Waste Pick Up
Xmas Tree Disposal Yard Waste Collection/Pick Up
Burning Ordinance Computer Recycling
Recycling Bin Replacement Appliance Pick Up
Household Hazardous Waste Prescription Drug Disposal

Recycling Phones and Batteries

Cell phones and their batteries, along with other rechargeable batteries MUST be recycled in Wisconsin. Go to: https://www.call2recycle.org/locator/ to help find a business that will accept these batteries and keep them out of the landfill where they can do significant environmental damage.

Collection Guidelines

Advanced Disposal's online guidelines for collection is avaiable here:



Holiday Waste Pickup Schedule

If the holiday happens to fall on Saturday or Sunday, your collection schedule will not be affected.

When a holiday precedes garbage pickup in a week, pickup will be pushed back one day from your normal schedule.  Please make sure to put your garbage out on the correct day.

For example, if Christmas Day is Tuesday and your normal service day is Wednesday, you will be serviced on Thursday. Customers who are normally serviced on Friday of that week will be serviced on Saturday.

There will be no pickup on the following holidays:

  • New Year's Day
  • Memorial Day
  • Independence Day
  • Labor Day
  • Thanksgiving Day
  • Christmas Day

-Normal pickups on Christmas Eve and New Year's Eve

Stay Informed

Waste Management Service Alerts allow customers to sign up to receive emails about important information such as service disruptions and weather delays. When you sign up for alerts, you get the most up-to-date information regarding your trash and recycling services. We encourage you to visit https://www.wm.com and register for Service Alerts today!

Medical Sharps

Reduce Public Health Risks by Proper Disposal of Household Medical Sharps
Waukesha (WI) – Waukesha County would like to remind residents that improperly disposing of medical sharps poses a public health risk along with the potential to injure haulers and recycling facility workers.  To reduce public health risks, Wisconsin rules require all citizens to manage sharps safely. It is illegal to put sharps in the trash or with recyclables and there are several options for safe disposal:

  • Contact your pharmacy, doctor, clinic or local hospital; many health care facilities accept sharps but are not legally required to register and therefore may not appear on the list of registered sharps collection stations.
  • Take sharps to a registered collection station.  To find a site in Waukesha County go to www.waukeshacounty.gov/recycling and click on Medical under Product Disposal.
  • Use a "mail-back" sharps program, which can be found by searching the internet. The company should provide containers and packaging which meet U.S. postal regulations.

“We want to make sure residents understand that if they dispose of their medical needles and sharps improperly, they are putting workers who collect their recyclables and trash at risk. Much of this work is done by hand, creating a hazardous situation for people who are providing a service to all of us,” stated Rebecca Mattano, Recycling & Solid Waste Supervisor for Waukesha County.

For more information, disposal publications and other locations for safe disposal of medical sharps in Wisconsin visit the Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources website: http://dnr.wi.gov/topic/HealthWaste/HouseholdSharps.html

Recycling Reminders

Waukesha, WI - While residents are diligent with recycling, there has been an increase in non-recyclable material entering the Waukesha County Materials Recycling Facility.  Workers of the facility must remove residue (trash) from the recyclables when these non-recyclable items are placed in recycle bins at resident’s homes.  This residue must be disposed in a landfill which costs about $60 per ton in Waukesha County. 

Waukesha County and the recycling facility operator, ReCommunity Recycling, want to remind residents to recycle #1 and #2 plastics bottles, jars and jugs with liquids out and the caps left on, steel/tin and aluminum cans, empty aerosol cans, glass bottles and jars, and paper, including newspaper, magazines and catalogs, junk mail, beverage carriers, paper egg cartons, paper towel rolls, toilet paper rolls, phone books and other paperback books, corrugated cardboard, and cereal, snack, and tissue boxes.

Recyclables, and many other common household items, are accepted from all County residents at these municipal sites:

Community Hours Summary of Accepted Items from Any County Resident
City of Brookfield April – Nov: Tues & Thurs 1 pm – 7 pm
All Year: Sat 8 am – 5 pm
Paper/Cardboard, Scrap Metal
Village of Hartland April – Nov: 2nd & 4th Sat 9 am – 1 pm
April – Nov: 2nd & 4th Tues 6 pm – 8 pm
All Year: Fri 9 am – 3 pm
Bottles/Cans, Paper/Cardboard, Motor Oil/Filters, Antifreeze, Scrap Metal, Electronics, Appliances
Town of Lisbon All day, every day (unstaffed drop-off) Motor Oil/Filters and Antifreeze
Town of Merton All Year: Sat 8 am – 12 pm Bottles/Cans, Paper/Cardboard, Motor Oil/Filters, Antifreeze, Scrap Metal, Electronics, Appliances
Village of Pewaukee Jan – Feb: Closed
March – Dec: Sat 9 am – 3 pm
April – Oct: Wed 4 pm – 7 pm
Bottles/Cans, Paper/Cardboard, Motor Oil/Filters, Antifreeze, Scrap Metal
City of Waukesha April – Dec: Wed 11 am – 7 pm
All Year: Sat 8 am – 4 pm
Bottles/Cans, Paper/Cardboard, Motor Oil/Filters, Antifreeze, Electronics, Textiles

Other municipal recycling drop-off sites are available.  Check sites for fees, regulations and other acceptable items.  Proof of residency is required.

Many other common household items can be recycled outside of the blue recycle bin such as clean, dry plastic bags and film, which is utilized by Trex and other companies to make wood alternative composite decking.  These plastic films can be brought to many local grocery and retail stores, such as Pick N’ Save, Kohl’s and Target which have recycling bins near store entrances.  These materials include plastic bags from produce, newspaper, bread, dry cleaning, retail stores and grocery stores, plastic case wrap from snack and beverage cases, and plastic packaging wrap from napkins, paper towels, bathroom tissue and diaper packaging.  Please visit www.PlasticFilmRecycling.org for more locations accepting plastic film for recycling.

Also, other common items for recycling include rechargeable batteries, small lead batteries and cell phones as these materials have valuable metals and chemicals that can be used in the manufacturing of new products.  These items can be recycled at participating businesses which include Batteries & Bulbs Plus, Sears, Target, Radio Shack, Home Depot, Office Depot, Black & Decker, Best Buy and Lowe’s.  Please visit www.rbrc.org for a complete list of participating businesses.

For more information please visit waukeshacounty.gov/recycling or call Waukesha County Recycling at (262) 896-8300.

Garbage Collection and Driveway Condition

Our garbage collectors would like to remind you that they cannot pickup your garbage if driveways are not cleared of snow and ice. Please make sure that your driveway is safe for the collectors.

It is Waste Management's policy that there be no vehicles in the driveway during garbage pick up. They are now using trucks rather than the carts for pick up and need more room to maneuver and keep safe. Please remember to move your vehicles on waste pick up days or place waste containers at the end of the driveway.

Propane Tanks NOT to be Recycled

Fire at Waukesha County Recycling Facility Linked to Propane Tank
Waukesha (WI) – Friday, July 15, 2011 – A fast response yesterday by the fire department and quick thinking by recycling facility staff minimized the damage from a small explosion which was apparently caused by the compaction of a 1-lb. propane cylinder in the baler at the County’s Materials Recycling Facility (MRF).  The resulting fire at the MRF, located at 220 S. Prairie Avenue in Waukesha, was quickly controlled by the fire department and no damage was done to the baler.   Fortunately, proper safety protocol and training also kept anyone from being injured.

Jim Lewis, plant manager for ReCommunity, the operator of the facility, said “Our sorters are constantly watching the materials on the sorting line to capture these dangerous items; however, one slipped through.  On Thursday we had already pulled three of the small propane cylinders from the processing line.  We encourage people in the community to recycle as much as possible, but we also encourage a safe working environment for our employees so they can go home to their families every night unharmed.  We ask residents to be careful not to place materials like propane cylinders and other dangerous items into the recycling".

During the baling process at the recycling facility, materials are compressed under hundreds of pounds of pressure in order to form a large bale for shipping.  Even when propane tanks are empty, they remain pressurized and can explode when compacted.

 “We were lucky that no one was injured and that the fire did not spread to paper bales,” stated Karen Fiedler, Waukesha County Solid Waste Supervisor.  “We are thankful that the MRF staff and city fire department helped avert a very dangerous and costly situation.”

For more details on what can be recycled, visit www.waukeshacounty.gov/recycling or call (262) 896-8300. For information on proper disposal of propane cylinders contact the retail store where the item was purchased or visit the Wisconsin Propane Gas Association website at www.wipga.org

Additionally, here is a listing of places that take tanks: http://www.waukeshacounty.gov/defaultwc.aspx?id=39853


Carton Recycling

We are happy to announce that the County Recycling Program will begin accepting paper beverage cartons for recycling this fall. This will help increase our recycling tonnage and reduce the amount of materials going to landfills, while providing fiber for new paper products.

We will be part of a national push on the part of carton manufacturers to implement municipal recycling programs in partnership with paper mills and MRF operators. Having been assured there are adequate long-term markets for the materials, FCR, operator of the County Materials Recycling Facility, and the County have agreed to add cartons to the recycling stream. FCR will be making some equipment modifications at the MRF to sort the cartons, which should be completed by the end of September. Until then, they will sort the cartons from the commingled sort line into barrels for storage. The addition of this new material will not add to the processing costs and will result in additional revenue.

These milk, juice, soup, and wine cartons, must be empty and placed in the blue recycling bins along with bottles and cans. Lids should be removed and thrown away. To help residents associate them with beverage and food containers i.e. bottles and cans, we will refer to these materials as cartons. [Although the major recyclable component of these cartons is paper, they are collected with bottles and cans, then sorted at the facility before baling and transporting to paper mills.]

You can read more about the Carton Council, a consortium of manufacturers, and see which communities already have carton recycling programs in place at www.recyclecartons.com.

Public Dump

Waste Management wants all county residents to know that they are no longer able to provide dumping services to residential or commercial customers at their Hartland dump site effective 7/1/2010.

Recycling Newsletter

Waukesha County has a fantastic e-newsletter that has updates on recycling sites, hazardous waste collection, and miscellaneous news on the Materials Recycling Facility. Check it out for all your recycling information.

Wrapping Paper Disposal

With the holiday season, many residents are confused about whether they can or cannot recycle their wrapping paper so we want to make sure and clarify.

No, wrapping paper is not accepted or recyclable for the county recycling program.  Residents should not put the wrapping paper in their blue recycling bins, nor bring it to the recycling drop-off sites and put in the cardboard/paper dumpsters.  It should be placed in the trash.

Xmas Tree Disposal

Xmas tree pick-up will be through the end of January. Trees must be placed down by the road. Do not put it in a plastic bag and if larger than 6 feet tall, cut in half.

Yard Waste Collection


Yard Waste Specifications:

  • Grass, leaves and garden debris shall be bagged in paper biodegradable yard waste bags, disposable cardboard boxes 3’ x 3 ’x 3’ (Appliance boxes ARE NOT acceptable), or unlined 32-gallon garbage cans with handles. You may also use plastic bags by purchasing and placing a sticker on each bag. Stickers in lots of twenty-five for $0.80 per sticker can be purchased at the Town Clerk’s Office or by sending a payment of $20.00 along with a self-addressed stamped long 4 1/8” x 9 1/2” envelope to the Town Hall.

  • Brush (branches less than 6 inches in diameter) must be cut to 4 foot lengths and bundled securely, not to exceed 1 1/2 feet in diameter.

  • No bag, bundle. or can shall weigh more than 60 pounds.

  • Yard waste much be at the curb the night before scheduled pick up.

Saturday Yard Waste collection dates - 2021

May 8
June 19
October 16
November 13


Remember, yard waste must be at the curb the night before the scheduled pick up.

Town Hall Drop Off Dates - 2021

Wednesday, March 24
2:00 pm - 7:00 pm
Saturday, April 3
8:00 am - 12:00 pm
Wednesday, April 14
2:00 pm - 7:00 pm
Saturday, April 24
8:00 am - 12:00 pm
Wednesday, May 19
2:00 pm - 7:00 pm
Saturday, May 29
8:00 am - 12:00 pm
Wednesday, June 9
2:00 pm - 7:00 pm
Wednesday, June 30
2:00 pm - 7:00 pm
Saturday, July 10
8:00 am - 12:00 pm
Wednesday, July 21
2:00 pm - 7:00 pm
Saturday, July 31
8:00 am - 12:00 pm
Wednesday, August 11
2:00 pm - 7:00 pm
Saturday, August 21
8:00 am - 12:00 pm
Wednesday, September 1
2:00 pm - 7:00 pm
Saturday, September 11
8:00 am - 12:00 pm
Wednesday, September 22
2:00 pm - 7:00 pm
Saturday, October 2
8:00 am - 12:00 pm
Wednesday, October 27
2:00 pm - 7:00 pm
Saturday, November 27
8:00 am - 12:00 pm
Saturday, December 11
8:00 am - 12:00 pm
No plastic bags will be allowed.



Burning Ordinance

Burning permits for residential burning are not required as long as the following conditions are met:

  1. There is not burning of: garbage, material producing a noxious odor, material creating a health hazard, flammable liquids, open areas of standing grass, woods or brush, or combustibles in an amount exceeding two feet in height and five feet in diameter

  2. Burning is only allowed during daylight hours

  3. No burning when winds exceed 10 miles per hour

  4. Burning in roadways or ditches is prohibited

  5. Burning must occur at least 25 feet from the front lot line, 15 feet from the side lot line and 10 feet from the rear lot line

  6. Adequate protection, such as a garden hose or fire extinguisher, must be readily available

  7. When burning in a container, it must have a wire mesh cover with an opening of 1/2 inch or less and be more than 25 feet from any building



Appliance Pick Up

Arrangements must be made before pick up day for any appliance.  In addition, pick up of appliances may not coincide with normal trash pick up day.  To schedule pick up of appliances, call Advanced Environmental at 262-369-3080 and proceed to Residential Home Service Department.

This does NOT include electronics or TVs. Please visit Waukesha County Recycling website www.waukeshacounty.gov/recycling for a list of disposal events for those items.

They do charge a fee for appliances that contain freon.  Contact them for more information and fees at 262-369-3080.

Additionally, Waste Management asks that on collection day, all toys and other valuables be kept at least 10 feet away from the refuse bags or cans.


Household Hazardous Waste/Computer Recycling

For information on Household Hazardous Waste and Computer Reycling, please  visit www.waukeshacounty.gov/recycling.

Town Calendar