FAQs

Our FAQs are available below.

Accounts

Was your cart missed on collection day?

You can request a pickup by filling out our Missed Pickup Form request form and we'll schedule a new pickup.  You may also contact Waste Management at 510-537-5500.

Why am I receiving a letter dated May 21, 2012 entitled “Notification of Special Assessment Process”?

All single-family property owners/residents received a notification letter.

I don’t receive a bill from Castro Valley Sanitary District (CVSan), do I?

No, you don’t receive a bill from CVSan for solid waste (recycling, organics & garbage) services, because CVSan contracts with Waste Management of Alameda County, Inc. (WMAC) for solid waste services.  You receive a quarterly bill from WMAC.

How do I know if I have a delinquent account?

Call the Waste Management of Alameda County, Inc. (WMAC) Customer Service Center at 510-537-5500, and a Customer Service Representative will be able to look up your account and provide you with information regarding your account.  The Customer Service Center is open Monday-Friday 7:00 a.m. – 5:00 p.m.

Is the Special Assessment Process for Delinquent Accounts for multi-family or commercial business customers?

The Special Assessment Process for Delinquent Accounts if for single-family residents.

How do I get an exemption for garbage service? Do I have to have garbage service?

Residents may call WMAC at (510) 537-5500 to request an exemption form for completion and submission. Recycling and organics service is mandatory.

I have a billing question. Who should I call?

Residents may call WMAC at (510) 537-5500 and commercial businesses may call WMAC at (510) 613-8700.

Wastewater

Do you have a dog?

The District makes every effort to try to minimize impacts on you, however, if you own a dog this makes our work a little more challenging! We would appreciate if you could provide us with your name and contact number so we can make special arrangements with you regarding the care for your dog before entering your property. Please contact us at (510) 537-0757.

Do I need a Grease Abatement Device?

Any Food Service Establishment (FSE) that introduces FOG into the sewer system in quantities large enough to cause line blockages or hinder sewage treatment is required to install a grease trap or interceptor.

Fats, Oils, and Grease Control Program

Do I need a Grease Abatement Device?

Any Food Service Establishment (FSE) that introduces FOG into the sewer system in quantities large enough to cause line blockages or hinder sewage treatment is required to install a grease trap or interceptor.

What kinds of problems do fat, oil and grease cause?

Sewer capacity constraints are frequently caused by improper materials, including fats, oils, and greases being introduced into the sewer system by District residents and businesses.

How big is the grease problem?

From 50–70 percent of all sanitary sewer system problems overflows are caused by accumulations of fats, oils and greases discharged to it from the preparation and serving of food.

Where does the fat, oil and grease come from?

Many sources. In the food industry, "grease" often refers to fats and oils derived from animal and vegetable sources. These include meats, nuts, cereals, beans and waxes/paraffins.

What are Grease Abatement Devices (GADs)?

Grease abatement devices are outdoor Gravity Grease Interceptors (GGIs) or indoor grease traps commonly known as Grease Removal Devises (GRDs) or Hydro-mechanical Grease Interceptor (HGIs) designed, constructed and intended to remove, hold or otherwise prevent the passage of Fats, Oils and Grease (FOG) into the sanitary sewer.

Do I need a grease interceptor or trap, though I do not fry or cook with grease?

Yes. The reason you need a grease trap or grease interceptor is because of the clean up, not the cooking. When you wash your cooking equipment, you are washing fats, oils, and grease (not to mention solids) into the building drainage system. It’s the fats, oils, grease and solids (food stuffs) that damage sewer systems.

Can you recommend a maintenance schedule for Grease Interceptors?

It is recommended that, all grease abatement devices should be maintained regularly such that the depth of floating FOG and settled solids accumulation do not exceed 25% of the hydraulic length, at any time. Thereby the working depth of each device stays more than 75% for effective FOG separation. All grease removal devices shall be maintained to ensure compliance with the District’s discharge limits for oil and grease in accordance with CVSan Code Section 6206. As per CVSan code section 4130, the minimum cleaning frequency required for all grease interceptors is 6 months. Some establishments will find it necessary to clean their interceptors more often than what is required by the code.

How do I know that my Grease Abatement Device is adequately sized?

The Uniform Plumbing Code requires that no grease trap have a capacity less than 20 gallons per minute (gpm) or more than 55 gpm. The size of the trap depends upon the number of fixtures connected to it. The size will also depend upon the maintenance schedule. If a grease trap or interceptor is not maintained regularly, it will not provide the necessary grease removal. The following table shows the gallons per minute (gpm) value for the total number of drainage fixture units (DFUs).

Who cleans the grease traps and interceptors?

The small under-the-sink or under-the-counter traps that are usually located inside the building may be cleaned by the establishment itself. It is recommended that if cleaning is performed by kitchen staff, solids and FOG should be dewatered and discarded in the trash. The large outside interceptors must be cleaned by a licensed grease hauler. A list of licensed grease haulers can be found here. This is due to the volume of waste contained inside the trap and the proper disposal of this waste. The interceptors are roughly the size of a residential septic tank and they are confined spaces. No one is allowed to enter confined spaces without training or certification.

Who is a "Licensed Grease Hauler"?

According to California Food and Agricultural Code Sections 19310 and 19311, a ‘Licensed Grease Hauler’ is a person who is registered with the department of Food and Agriculture as a transporter of inedible kitchen grease and who is in possession of a valid registration certificate from the Department of Food and Agriculture. Licensed Grease Haulers are eligible to operate vehicles for the purpose of collecting inedible kitchen grease that includes used cooking/fryer oil. They are also eligible to clean the grease traps and grease interceptors.

What should I do with yellow grease (used cooking/fryer oil)?

Do not pour yellow grease down the drain or in the trash. It is best to compost small amounts of cooking/fryer oil (in a paper milk or ice cream carton). Large amounts of cooking/fryer oil should be collected in a separate recycling bin or container setup either inside or outside the building and hauled through a licensed grease hauler. Large amounts of used oil can also be transported by the food facilities in their own vehicles to the central collection point.

What should I do with brown grease (grease scrapped from traps and cook-wares)?

It is best to compost small amounts of grease scrapped from traps and cook-wares (in a paper milk or ice cream carton).The grease from traps and cook-wares should not go into the used oil recycle storage bin. Brown grease should not be mixed with yellow grease, unless the yellow grease hauler can recycle the entire contents when they are mixed. Large quantities of brown grease should be poured into regular garbage (solid waste) for pick up and disposal.

How should FSEs stay compliant with the District Codes?

The food service establishment should install and maintain appropriate grease removal devices, as per CVSan Codes and follow all the ‘Best Management Practices’ (BMPs) of the District.

Reduce Your Waste Size Program

What is the Reduce Your Waste Size Program and How Can I Sign Up?

Click here for complete details on the program.

I’ve been wanting to downsize to a 20 or 32-gallon garbage cart because I generate less garbage and/or I am recycling and composting more. How can I downsize my cart?

Castro Valley Sanitary District single-family residents (4 units or less) are eligible to receive a $50.00 credit on their next recycling & garbage bill by reducing their waste and garbage cart down to a 20-gallon.  Residents, on their honor, are encouraged to commit to the smallest garbage cart for at least a year. 

Bill payers may now request a downsize by calling the (510) 613-8745 message center with required account information or by completing the online form.  Cart exchanges will be scheduled by appointment.  Read on or call (510) 537-5500 for program details, eligibility guidelines, and the required account information to be left on the message center.

By reducing your garbage cart to a 20-gallon, you will be:

• “Right-sizing” your garbage cart to better represent what you actually send to landfill.

• Saving approximately $12.00 per month on your bill, or $144.00 per year (per 32 to 20-gallon cart migration).  Your next bill will be prorated from the date your request was confirmed with Waste Management of Alameda County, Inc. (WMAC).

• Receiving a $50.00 credit on your next WMAC bill. 

Solid Waste

What is the Reduce Your Waste Size Program and How Can I Sign Up?

Click here for complete details on the program.

What do I do with dead animals?

If you find a dead animal (ex. rat, opossum, bird) on or near your property, please contact Alameda County Animal Control http://alamedacountysheriff.org/CWS/field_services.htm to pick up the animal.  If Animal Control is not able to come, Alameda County Vector Control Services District suggests bagging up the animal and placing it in your garbage cart or bin.  Please bag the animal first to help prevent and reduce the potential for disease transmission.

I thought Castro Valley Sanitary District (CVSan) and Waste Management of Alameda County, Inc. (WMAC) were the same company. Is that not true?

CVSan contracts municipal solid waste collection, processing, and disposal services to WMAC. CVSan doesn't actually drive the collection trucks, process payments, or deliver carts.

What are the cart colors?

Blue = Recycling
Green = Organics
Brown = Garbage

How do I get an exemption for garbage service? Do I have to have garbage service?

Residents may call WMAC at (510) 537-5500 to request an exemption form for completion and submission. Recycling and organics service is mandatory.

I have a billing question. Who should I call?

Residents may call WMAC at (510) 537-5500 and commercial businesses may call WMAC at (510) 613-8700.

My recycling/organics/garbage cart was missed during collection. What do I do?

Call WMAC at (510) 537-5500 to report missed collection or fill out a missed pickup form online.

What are all the recyclables that are accepted?

Inside the Blue Recycling Cart: All clean paper, corrugated cardboard, brown bags and paper, paperboard, paper egg cartons, telephone books and magazines, clear and colored glass containers, aluminum foil and beverage containers, scrap steel and aluminum metals (not exceeding 40 pounds in weight nor two (2) feet in any dimension for any single item); steel including ”tin” cans, aerosol cans (empty, non-toxic products), bimetal containers, all plastics (#1-7) except expanded Polystyrene (EPS).

On top of the Blue Recycling Cart: Dry cell batteries (household batteries such as AAA, AA, B, C, D, 9V, and small “button” batteries; no liquid batteries such as automobile batteries).

Next to the Blue Recycling Cart: Flattened corrugated cardboard no larger than 4’ tall x 4’ wide.

How do I recycle Used Motor Oil? Filters? Other auto fluids?

Single-Family residents may place one-gallon screw-top containers curbside beside your collection carts on your regular collection day. You can recycle up to three (3) gallons per week of motor oil, transmission fluid, gear lube and other lubricants commonly used in cars and light trucks. Oil filters can be put in a heavyweight sealed clear plastic bag and placed curbside. Call WMAC at (510) 537-5500 to request delivery of a Used Oil jug and filter bag kit.

Used Oil and filters may be dropped off at a Collection Center (see below).

Collection Centers in Castro Valley:
 

  • Castro Valley Autohaus* 20697 Park Way (510) 581-4525
  • Jiffy Lube* 2492 Castro Valley Blvd. (510) 582-7677
  • Kevin Hinckley Auto Tech* 5269 Crow Canyon Road (510) 881-1052
  • O'Reilly Auto Parts** 2990 Castro Valley Blvd. (510) 881-0761
  • O'Reilly Auto Parts**15604 Hesperian Blvd. (510) 276-7822
  • Quality Tune Up* 2780 Castro Valley Blvd. (510) 887-9945
  • RyNck Tire & Auto Center 3430 Castro Valley Blvd. (510) 886-9500
  • Sal's Foreign Car Service* 3343 Castro Valley Blvd. (510) 582-5282
  • SpeeDee Oil Change 3940 Castro Valley Blvd. (510) 886-9500

*Centers that also accept filters** Center that only collects motor oil; does not change oil.

I'm interested in home composting. Where can I get more information?

Call the 'Rotline' at (510) 444-SOIL for information about home composting, and remember that many items not compostable at home (food-soiled paper, meat and cheese, bread products) can be placed in your green organics cart for composting

What's the "new contract" and when did it start?

CVSan entered into a 10-year municipal solid waste collection agreement and 20-year disposal agreement with WMAC from May 1, 2009-April 30, 2019 and 2029, respectively.

WMAC provides franchised recycling, organics, and garbage services for residents, multi-family complexes, and commercial businesses. Annual on-call bulky goods collection services, used motor oil and filter recycling, and dry cell batteries (household batteries such as AAA, AA, B, C, D, 9V, and small “button” batteries; no liquid batteries such as automobile batteries) recycling are provided to residents and multi-family complexes. WMAC also processes construction and demolition debris.

Why were my carts exchanged for new ones?

New carts are necessary in order to be serviced by the new WMAC collection vehicles. When CVSan issued its Request for Proposals in 2007, new collection containers were included in the proposal to ensure that the existing hauling company would not have an unfair financial advantage since they owned the carts. At the end of the 2009-2019 franchise agreement, CVSan owns the carts.

Carts have a life-expectancy of 10 years, therefore the delivery of new carts to all cart customers (residential and commercial) in 2009 streamlines the replacement efforts and keeps costs lower.

The carts have a full-color in-mold graphic on the lids with images to pictorially explain what goes in each cart.

 

My garbage and recycling used to be picked up by the same truck. Has that changed?

Yes. As of May 1, 2009, garbage and recycling are picked up by separate collection trucks

I have extra cardboard that won’t fit in my recycling cart. What do I do?

Customers with blue recycling cart service may flatten corrugated cardboard no larger than 4’ tall x 4’ wide and place beside the blue recycling cart for collection.

How do I recycle batteries?

Because of the toxic chemicals that can leak from batteries that end up in a landfill, it is against the law to throw any battery (including household batteries) into the trash. Single-Family and Multi-Family residents with blue recycling cart service may participate in CVSan’s curbside battery recycling program by placing used dry cell (household) batteries in a sealed clear plastic bag on top of your blue recycling cart on your service day.

Do you have any kitchen pails and vented lid pails for food scrap recycling?

CVSan currently has Open Air pails available. These are larger green containers with a handle and no lid. A standard grocery store paper bag fits inside the pail, and allows moisture from the food scraps and food-soiled paper to evaporate quicker and easier than a pail with a sealed lid. Residents and small businesses have found these pails to work well, and place them on the floor next to indoor recycling and garbage containers. The vented lid pail allows most smells from the container to be kept inside while not in use. Interested parties may complete a Donation Request Form.

What should I do with an old WMAC cart?

The old carts will be collected and either reused or recycled. Please contact WMAC to have the cart removed.

How do I recycle paint?

Paint is no longer accepted at the curb. All types of paint need to be taken to an Alameda County Household Hazardous Waste facility. Call (800) 606-6606 or (510) 670-6460 for more information. Latex and water-based paint will be accepted at the CVSan Recycles Day in August 2012. For more on paint visit www.household-hazwaste.org

I have some unusual items to recycle. Where can I get more information about what to do with them?

Call the Alameda County Recycling Hotline toll-free at (877) STOPWASTE (786-7927) or check out the Recycling Wizard from StopWaste.Org. You may also check out the "What Do I Do With" section of the CVSan website.

Can I get a 96-gallon cart for my recycling and/or organics?

Yes, residents may receive up to a 96-gallon cart for recycling or organics at no additional charge, but you will be charged if you wish to have additional carts with corresponding service. Call WMAC at (510) 537-5500 to request a larger sized recycling or organics cart.

How do I obtain a sharps disposal container?

Locally, you can purchase a sharps disposal container from local drugstores (Rite Aid, Longs Drug, Walgreens) or from an Alameda County Household Hazardous Waste facility. District residents (present a copy of your Waste Management bill or ID at time of purchase) can purchase a postage-paid Sharps Disposal by Mail container at a discount at the Castro Valley Rite Aid. The cost of destruction and mailing, as well as confirmation of destruction, is included in the purchase price.

I live in the Castro Valley Canyonlands area. Will I be getting recycling soon?

PDF CVSDFinalv2CanyonlandsAnnexNegDec-IS090720.pdf

A. CVSan is in the process of applying for an annexation with special provisions for garbage and recycling services only for the Castro Valley Canyonlands. The application will need to go through a review process by the Local Agency Formation Commission (LAFCo) and therefore CVSan does not have a completion date available. Residents and businesses interested in recycling or organics service may contact WMAC at (510) 537-5500.

Notice of Availability and Intent to Adopt a Negative Declaration

Date: July 20, 2009

Project Title: Castro Valley and Palomares Canyonlands Sphere of Influence Amendment and Annexation to Castro Valley Sanitary District for Garbage and Recycling Services

Lead Agency: Castro Valley Sanitary District, 21040 Marshall Street, Castro Valley, CA 94546

Staff Contact: Naomi R. Lue, Solid Waste Coordinator, naomi@cvsan.org, (510) 537-0757

Project Location: Castro Valley and Palomares Canyonlands area of unincorporated Alameda County

Parcel No.: N/A
Parcel Size: N/A

To Whom It May Concern:
This notice is to inform you of the availability of the environmental review document concerning the proposed project as described below. The document is a Preliminary Negative Declaration, containing information about the possible environmental effects of the proposed project. The Preliminary Negative Declaration documents the determination of the Castro Valley Sanitary District (CVSan) that the proposed project could not have a significant adverse effect on the environment. Preparation of a Negative Declaration does not indicate a decision by the CVSan to carry out or not to carry out the proposed project.

Project Description: The project proposes a partial annexation into CVSan’s district boundary of the area referred to as the Castro Valley and Palomares Canyonlands (“Canyonlands”) in order to provide garbage and recycling services. The Canyonlands area is located on unincorporated Alameda County land. No provision of wastewater collection and treatment or other public services is proposed under this partial annexation, nor is such service anticipated to be provided in the future to the area.

Garbage service is currently provided by Waste Management of Alameda County (WMAC) to roughly 260 addresses on 14 roads in the Canyonlands area, under a franchise agreement with Alameda County that extends into 2019. Thereafter, these services would be provided by any hauler with which the District chooses to contract. Garbage service is currently provided using two types of vehicles, and recycling service would use the same or similar vehicles: a Rear End Loader with a capacity of 20-30 cubic yards depending on the material collected and a pick-up truck mounted with a Par-Kan refuse dumper with a capacity of six cubic yards, for moving collected materials in restricted areas. Collected material would be brought to the Davis Street Recycling & Transfer Station, a municipal solid waste (MSW) transfer station and commingled recycling processing facility in San Leandro.

If you would like a copy of the Preliminary Negative Declaration or have questions concerning environmental review of the proposed project, contact the CVSan staff contact listed above.

Public Review: Public Review of this Preliminary Negative Declaration begins on July 22, 2009 and ends 30 days after publication of this document, by the close of business on August 20, 2009. Written comments on the Preliminary Negative Declaration may be submitted to the CVSan staff contact listed above, until the close of the review period.

Copies of the Preliminary Negative Declaration may be reviewed at www.cvsan.org or at Castro Valley Sanitary District, 21040 Marshall Street, Castro Valley, California 94546.

Public Hearing: The Board of Directors will consider adoption of the Negative Declaration and will consider approval of the project at the CVSan Board of Directors Meeting on September 1, 2009 at 6:30 p.m. at Castro Valley Sanitary District, 21040 Marshall Street, Castro Valley, California 94546.

Toxics List: The project site is not on any list identifying it as a hazardous or toxic waste site.
 

I heard the WMAC trucks are “LNG” and “semi-automated” – what does that mean?

The new WMAC vehicles are Liquid Natural Gas vehicles. That means that they do not use diesel; they use natural gas. These vehicles are cleaner burning and were provided to the District at no additional cost. The vehicles are also semi-automated which means that the driver will be standing inside the vehicle and will get out at every stop in order to bring the cart to the automated arm of the vehicle; the automated arm will pick up and empty the contents of your cart into the collection vehicle. Carts no longer need to be placed 3 feet apart.

Where can I take my sharps once my container is full?

Full containers must be dropped of at an Alameda County Household Hazardous Waste facility. For further information contact HHW at (800) 606-6606. District residents (present a copy of your Waste Management bill or ID at time of purchase) can purchase a postage-paid Sharps Disposal by Mail container at a discount at the Castro Valley Rite Aid. The cost of destruction and mailing, as well as confirmation of destruction, is included in the purchase price.

What are the hours of collection?

Residential collection will be provided Monday-Friday no earlier than 6:00 a.m., and business collection Monday-Saturday no earlier than 4:00 a.m. (except within 200 feet of residential properties). No service will be provided on the following holidays: Thanksgiving Day, Christmas Day, and New Year’s Day, where services will be one day later through Saturday.

One of my carts just needs a repair to the lid, wheel(s) or axle. How do I get my cart repaired?

Call WMAC at (510) 537-5500 to request the repair of a cart. It should take about 5 business days to receive a replacement cart.

What items can I take to the HHW facility?

For a complete list of items accepted at HHW visit www.household-hazwaste.org or call (800)606-6606.

What if I have physical difficulty taking my carts out to the curb?

Call WMAC at (510) 537-5500 and a street/curbside exemption form will be mailed to you. A doctor's letter or a certificate from the Department of Motor Vehicles must accompany the request.

Where can I take expired medications?

Thanks to the partnership between Castro Valley Sanitary District (CVSan), Eden Medical Center, and the Alameda County Medication Disposal Initiative Workgroup, you can now drop off your pharmaceutical waste at Eden Medical Center for free 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.

The location of the free public collection box is:
Eden Medical Center
20103 Lake Chabot Road
Castro Valley, CA 94546

For procedures and more click here.

 

You can also bring expired medications to an Alameda County Household Hazardous Waste facility.

Visit our Houshold Hazardous Waste webpage for occasional local pharmaceutical take-back events.

http://www.cvsan.org/content/household-hazardous-waste

 

 

Where should I place my carts for collection?

Carts are to be placed street/curbside by 6:00 am on your collection day with their handles to the curb.

My neighbor leaves their carts out longer than 24 hours before/after collection day. What should I do?

Call Code Enforcement to report carts that have been out longer than 24 hours after collection day (510) 670-5408

Who owns the carts and bins? Who owns what is placed inside the carts and bins?

During the franchise agreement, the carts and bins are owned by WMAC. At the end of the agreement in 2019, CVSan owns the carts. Once materials/refuse are placed inside a cart or bin and placed at the curb for collection, they become the property of WMAC.

Can I Recycle

Cleaning wipes and facial tissue?

Compost cleaning wipes and used facial tissue. Wipes must be compostable (paper/tree-based). Please note, cotton or fabric wipes must be disposed of in the garbage. Do not flush cotton or fabric wipes down the toilet, as they may cause a sewer back-up.

Shredded paper?

Place shredded paper in a paper bag to avoid litter problems, then compost in the green organics cart/bin. Please note, shredded paper cannot be recycled in the recycling cart/bin because the fibers are too short to be made into recycled paper.

Incandescent, LED or fluorescent light bulbs?

Place incandescent and LED light bulbs in the garbage. Please note, fluroescent light bulbs must be disposed of at a Hazardous Waste facility (800-606-6606).

Sewer Service Charge

What is a Sewer Service Charge?

The purpose of the sewer service charge is to raise revenue to fund the cost for maintenance and operation and for renewal and replacement of the facilities necessary to collect, treat and dispose of wastewater generated from your home or business to ultimate deep-water discharge into San Francisco Bay.

How do I pay my Sewer Service Charge?

The District uses the Alameda County Tax Rolls as the primary method of collection of the Sanitary Sewer Service Charge on an annual basis. This line item shows up on the property owner’s property tax bill under the Special Assessments section.

How does my rate compare to other sewer service charge rates in the area?

The District has one of the lowest rates in Alameda County and lower than the average annual charge in the State of California.

CVSan & WMAC

I thought Castro Valley Sanitary District (CVSan) and Waste Management of Alameda County, Inc. (WMAC) were the same company. Is that not true?

CVSan contracts municipal solid waste collection, processing, and disposal services to WMAC. CVSan doesn't actually drive the collection trucks, process payments, or deliver carts.

Carts

What are the cart colors?

Blue = Recycling
Green = Organics
Brown = Garbage

Why were my carts exchanged for new ones?

New carts are necessary in order to be serviced by the new WMAC collection vehicles. When CVSan issued its Request for Proposals in 2007, new collection containers were included in the proposal to ensure that the existing hauling company would not have an unfair financial advantage since they owned the carts. At the end of the 2009-2019 franchise agreement, CVSan owns the carts.

Carts have a life-expectancy of 10 years, therefore the delivery of new carts to all cart customers (residential and commercial) in 2009 streamlines the replacement efforts and keeps costs lower.

The carts have a full-color in-mold graphic on the lids with images to pictorially explain what goes in each cart.

 

What should I do with an old WMAC cart?

The old carts will be collected and either reused or recycled. Please contact WMAC to have the cart removed.

Can I get a 96-gallon cart for my recycling and/or organics?

Yes, residents may receive up to a 96-gallon cart for recycling or organics at no additional charge, but you will be charged if you wish to have additional carts with corresponding service. Call WMAC at (510) 537-5500 to request a larger sized recycling or organics cart.

I’ve been wanting to downsize to a 20 or 32-gallon garbage cart because I generate less garbage and/or I am recycling and composting more. How can I downsize my cart?

Castro Valley Sanitary District single-family residents (4 units or less) are eligible to receive a $50.00 credit on their next recycling & garbage bill by reducing their waste and garbage cart down to a 20-gallon.  Residents, on their honor, are encouraged to commit to the smallest garbage cart for at least a year. 

Bill payers may now request a downsize by calling the (510) 613-8745 message center with required account information or by completing the online form.  Cart exchanges will be scheduled by appointment.  Read on or call (510) 537-5500 for program details, eligibility guidelines, and the required account information to be left on the message center.

By reducing your garbage cart to a 20-gallon, you will be:

• “Right-sizing” your garbage cart to better represent what you actually send to landfill.

• Saving approximately $12.00 per month on your bill, or $144.00 per year (per 32 to 20-gallon cart migration).  Your next bill will be prorated from the date your request was confirmed with Waste Management of Alameda County, Inc. (WMAC).

• Receiving a $50.00 credit on your next WMAC bill. 

One of my carts just needs a repair to the lid, wheel(s) or axle. How do I get my cart repaired?

Call WMAC at (510) 537-5500 to request the repair of a cart. It should take about 5 business days to receive a replacement cart.

What if I have physical difficulty taking my carts out to the curb?

Call WMAC at (510) 537-5500 and a street/curbside exemption form will be mailed to you. A doctor's letter or a certificate from the Department of Motor Vehicles must accompany the request.

My neighbor leaves their carts out longer than 24 hours before/after collection day. What should I do?

Call Code Enforcement to report carts that have been out longer than 24 hours after collection day (510) 670-5408

Who owns the carts and bins? Who owns what is placed inside the carts and bins?

During the franchise agreement, the carts and bins are owned by WMAC. At the end of the agreement in 2019, CVSan owns the carts. Once materials/refuse are placed inside a cart or bin and placed at the curb for collection, they become the property of WMAC.

Collection/Vehicles

My recycling/organics/garbage cart was missed during collection. What do I do?

Call WMAC at (510) 537-5500 to report missed collection or fill out a missed pickup form online.

My garbage and recycling used to be picked up by the same truck. Has that changed?

Yes. As of May 1, 2009, garbage and recycling are picked up by separate collection trucks

I heard the WMAC trucks are “LNG” and “semi-automated” – what does that mean?

The new WMAC vehicles are Liquid Natural Gas vehicles. That means that they do not use diesel; they use natural gas. These vehicles are cleaner burning and were provided to the District at no additional cost. The vehicles are also semi-automated which means that the driver will be standing inside the vehicle and will get out at every stop in order to bring the cart to the automated arm of the vehicle; the automated arm will pick up and empty the contents of your cart into the collection vehicle. Carts no longer need to be placed 3 feet apart.

What are the hours of collection?

Residential collection will be provided Monday-Friday no earlier than 6:00 a.m., and business collection Monday-Saturday no earlier than 4:00 a.m. (except within 200 feet of residential properties). No service will be provided on the following holidays: Thanksgiving Day, Christmas Day, and New Year’s Day, where services will be one day later through Saturday.

Where should I place my carts for collection?

Carts are to be placed street/curbside by 6:00 am on your collection day with their handles to the curb.

My neighbor leaves their carts out longer than 24 hours before/after collection day. What should I do?

Call Code Enforcement to report carts that have been out longer than 24 hours after collection day (510) 670-5408

Recycling

What are all the recyclables that are accepted?

Inside the Blue Recycling Cart: All clean paper, corrugated cardboard, brown bags and paper, paperboard, paper egg cartons, telephone books and magazines, clear and colored glass containers, aluminum foil and beverage containers, scrap steel and aluminum metals (not exceeding 40 pounds in weight nor two (2) feet in any dimension for any single item); steel including ”tin” cans, aerosol cans (empty, non-toxic products), bimetal containers, all plastics (#1-7) except expanded Polystyrene (EPS).

On top of the Blue Recycling Cart: Dry cell batteries (household batteries such as AAA, AA, B, C, D, 9V, and small “button” batteries; no liquid batteries such as automobile batteries).

Next to the Blue Recycling Cart: Flattened corrugated cardboard no larger than 4’ tall x 4’ wide.

I have extra cardboard that won’t fit in my recycling cart. What do I do?

Customers with blue recycling cart service may flatten corrugated cardboard no larger than 4’ tall x 4’ wide and place beside the blue recycling cart for collection.

I have some unusual items to recycle. Where can I get more information about what to do with them?

Call the Alameda County Recycling Hotline toll-free at (877) STOPWASTE (786-7927) or check out the Recycling Wizard from StopWaste.Org. You may also check out the "What Do I Do With" section of the CVSan website.

I live in the Castro Valley Canyonlands area. Will I be getting recycling soon?

PDF CVSDFinalv2CanyonlandsAnnexNegDec-IS090720.pdf

A. CVSan is in the process of applying for an annexation with special provisions for garbage and recycling services only for the Castro Valley Canyonlands. The application will need to go through a review process by the Local Agency Formation Commission (LAFCo) and therefore CVSan does not have a completion date available. Residents and businesses interested in recycling or organics service may contact WMAC at (510) 537-5500.

Notice of Availability and Intent to Adopt a Negative Declaration

Date: July 20, 2009

Project Title: Castro Valley and Palomares Canyonlands Sphere of Influence Amendment and Annexation to Castro Valley Sanitary District for Garbage and Recycling Services

Lead Agency: Castro Valley Sanitary District, 21040 Marshall Street, Castro Valley, CA 94546

Staff Contact: Naomi R. Lue, Solid Waste Coordinator, naomi@cvsan.org, (510) 537-0757

Project Location: Castro Valley and Palomares Canyonlands area of unincorporated Alameda County

Parcel No.: N/A
Parcel Size: N/A

To Whom It May Concern:
This notice is to inform you of the availability of the environmental review document concerning the proposed project as described below. The document is a Preliminary Negative Declaration, containing information about the possible environmental effects of the proposed project. The Preliminary Negative Declaration documents the determination of the Castro Valley Sanitary District (CVSan) that the proposed project could not have a significant adverse effect on the environment. Preparation of a Negative Declaration does not indicate a decision by the CVSan to carry out or not to carry out the proposed project.

Project Description: The project proposes a partial annexation into CVSan’s district boundary of the area referred to as the Castro Valley and Palomares Canyonlands (“Canyonlands”) in order to provide garbage and recycling services. The Canyonlands area is located on unincorporated Alameda County land. No provision of wastewater collection and treatment or other public services is proposed under this partial annexation, nor is such service anticipated to be provided in the future to the area.

Garbage service is currently provided by Waste Management of Alameda County (WMAC) to roughly 260 addresses on 14 roads in the Canyonlands area, under a franchise agreement with Alameda County that extends into 2019. Thereafter, these services would be provided by any hauler with which the District chooses to contract. Garbage service is currently provided using two types of vehicles, and recycling service would use the same or similar vehicles: a Rear End Loader with a capacity of 20-30 cubic yards depending on the material collected and a pick-up truck mounted with a Par-Kan refuse dumper with a capacity of six cubic yards, for moving collected materials in restricted areas. Collected material would be brought to the Davis Street Recycling & Transfer Station, a municipal solid waste (MSW) transfer station and commingled recycling processing facility in San Leandro.

If you would like a copy of the Preliminary Negative Declaration or have questions concerning environmental review of the proposed project, contact the CVSan staff contact listed above.

Public Review: Public Review of this Preliminary Negative Declaration begins on July 22, 2009 and ends 30 days after publication of this document, by the close of business on August 20, 2009. Written comments on the Preliminary Negative Declaration may be submitted to the CVSan staff contact listed above, until the close of the review period.

Copies of the Preliminary Negative Declaration may be reviewed at www.cvsan.org or at Castro Valley Sanitary District, 21040 Marshall Street, Castro Valley, California 94546.

Public Hearing: The Board of Directors will consider adoption of the Negative Declaration and will consider approval of the project at the CVSan Board of Directors Meeting on September 1, 2009 at 6:30 p.m. at Castro Valley Sanitary District, 21040 Marshall Street, Castro Valley, California 94546.

Toxics List: The project site is not on any list identifying it as a hazardous or toxic waste site.
 

Household Hazardous Waste

How do I recycle Used Motor Oil? Filters? Other auto fluids?

Single-Family residents may place one-gallon screw-top containers curbside beside your collection carts on your regular collection day. You can recycle up to three (3) gallons per week of motor oil, transmission fluid, gear lube and other lubricants commonly used in cars and light trucks. Oil filters can be put in a heavyweight sealed clear plastic bag and placed curbside. Call WMAC at (510) 537-5500 to request delivery of a Used Oil jug and filter bag kit.

Used Oil and filters may be dropped off at a Collection Center (see below).

Collection Centers in Castro Valley:
 

  • Castro Valley Autohaus* 20697 Park Way (510) 581-4525
  • Jiffy Lube* 2492 Castro Valley Blvd. (510) 582-7677
  • Kevin Hinckley Auto Tech* 5269 Crow Canyon Road (510) 881-1052
  • O'Reilly Auto Parts** 2990 Castro Valley Blvd. (510) 881-0761
  • O'Reilly Auto Parts**15604 Hesperian Blvd. (510) 276-7822
  • Quality Tune Up* 2780 Castro Valley Blvd. (510) 887-9945
  • RyNck Tire & Auto Center 3430 Castro Valley Blvd. (510) 886-9500
  • Sal's Foreign Car Service* 3343 Castro Valley Blvd. (510) 582-5282
  • SpeeDee Oil Change 3940 Castro Valley Blvd. (510) 886-9500

*Centers that also accept filters** Center that only collects motor oil; does not change oil.

How do I recycle batteries?

Because of the toxic chemicals that can leak from batteries that end up in a landfill, it is against the law to throw any battery (including household batteries) into the trash. Single-Family and Multi-Family residents with blue recycling cart service may participate in CVSan’s curbside battery recycling program by placing used dry cell (household) batteries in a sealed clear plastic bag on top of your blue recycling cart on your service day.

How do I recycle paint?

Paint is no longer accepted at the curb. All types of paint need to be taken to an Alameda County Household Hazardous Waste facility. Call (800) 606-6606 or (510) 670-6460 for more information. Latex and water-based paint will be accepted at the CVSan Recycles Day in August 2012. For more on paint visit www.household-hazwaste.org

How do I obtain a sharps disposal container?

Locally, you can purchase a sharps disposal container from local drugstores (Rite Aid, Longs Drug, Walgreens) or from an Alameda County Household Hazardous Waste facility. District residents (present a copy of your Waste Management bill or ID at time of purchase) can purchase a postage-paid Sharps Disposal by Mail container at a discount at the Castro Valley Rite Aid. The cost of destruction and mailing, as well as confirmation of destruction, is included in the purchase price.

Where can I take my sharps once my container is full?

Full containers must be dropped of at an Alameda County Household Hazardous Waste facility. For further information contact HHW at (800) 606-6606. District residents (present a copy of your Waste Management bill or ID at time of purchase) can purchase a postage-paid Sharps Disposal by Mail container at a discount at the Castro Valley Rite Aid. The cost of destruction and mailing, as well as confirmation of destruction, is included in the purchase price.

What are the locations and hours of operation for the Alameda County Household Hazardous Waste (HHW)?

There are locations in Oakland, Hayward, Livermore, and Fremont. Hayward and Livermore locations are open every other Thursday, Friday and Saturday from 9:00 am – 1:00 pm. Oakland is open every Thursday, Friday, and Saturday from 9:00 am – 1:00 pm. Fremont is open Thursday and Friday from 8:30 am - 2:30 pm and Saturday 8:00 am - 4:30 pm. For further information about locations and operation schedule call (800) 606-6606

What items can I take to the HHW facility?

For a complete list of items accepted at HHW visit www.household-hazwaste.org or call (800)606-6606.

Where can I take expired medications?

Thanks to the partnership between Castro Valley Sanitary District (CVSan), Eden Medical Center, and the Alameda County Medication Disposal Initiative Workgroup, you can now drop off your pharmaceutical waste at Eden Medical Center for free 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.

The location of the free public collection box is:
Eden Medical Center
20103 Lake Chabot Road
Castro Valley, CA 94546

For procedures and more click here.

 

You can also bring expired medications to an Alameda County Household Hazardous Waste facility.

Visit our Houshold Hazardous Waste webpage for occasional local pharmaceutical take-back events.

http://www.cvsan.org/content/household-hazardous-waste

 

 

Organics/Composting

I'm interested in home composting. Where can I get more information?

Call the 'Rotline' at (510) 444-SOIL for information about home composting, and remember that many items not compostable at home (food-soiled paper, meat and cheese, bread products) can be placed in your green organics cart for composting

Do you have any kitchen pails and vented lid pails for food scrap recycling?

CVSan currently has Open Air pails available. These are larger green containers with a handle and no lid. A standard grocery store paper bag fits inside the pail, and allows moisture from the food scraps and food-soiled paper to evaporate quicker and easier than a pail with a sealed lid. Residents and small businesses have found these pails to work well, and place them on the floor next to indoor recycling and garbage containers. The vented lid pail allows most smells from the container to be kept inside while not in use. Interested parties may complete a Donation Request Form.

Lateral Replacement Grant Program

Is there a program to replace my sewer lateral?

Yes, CVSan offers a reimbursement program to help residents replace their sewer laterals. This program is called the Lateral Replacement Grant Program. Funds are replenished based on a fiscal year (July through June). For more information and availability, contact CVSan at (510) 606-1300.

How do I get an application for the Lateral Replacement Grant Program?

 

Download an application at our website, pick one up at CVSan's Capital Improvement Projects office located at 20211 Patio Dr Suite 200, Castro Valley, or request a copy be mailed to you by calling (510) 606-1300. Please be aware the property owner is responsible for obtaining an application.

What do I do after I receive my application?

After you receive your application form, you will need to fill out Sections I - III.

From whom do I get price quotations?

You get price quotations from CVSan Qualified Contractors.

How many quotes do I need to obtain?

You need to obtain three (3) quotes; however, CVSan encourages you to obtain four (4) for better price comparison.

Can CVSan recommend licensed contractors?

Legally, CVSan may not recommend any contractors. However, CVSan can supply you with a List of CVSan Qualified Contractors who have worked in CVSan boundaries. For a list of CVSan Qualified Contractors, please contact (510) 606-1300.

 
What is a Condition Rating?

Condition rating is an assessment of the sewer lateral to determine the degree of defects to the line. Condition ratings take into consideration: pipe cracks, roots, water infiltration evidence, and other defects. Each defect is given a numerical designation (this is similar to the method used on public sanitary sewer lines). Those laterals in poor condition (condition rating) will receive grant funding.

How do I know if I have qualified for the LRGP?

When you receive a Letter of Approval from CVSan stating that you have qualified and funds have been obligated for your project.

Do I need any permits for this work?

Yes. You will need a repair permit from CVSan to perform this work. You may also need an encroachment permit from Alameda County Public Works if you are doing work in the public right of way.

After I have received my Letter of Approval, what happens next?

You will be able to commence work. However, prior to commencement of work you need to make sure your contractor has been issued any necessary permits for the job.

When do I need an inspection?

A site inspection is required by CVSan personnel after the new sewer line has been installed, but prior to any backfilling. CVSan personnel will witness testing of the entire line from the building foundation to the connection to the main. Testing will be performed by your contractor.

What happens after the site inspection?

 

Once inspection is complete, you need to submit a copy of your paid-in-full invoice to CVSan for the work performed. CVSan will then process your application for payment. Payment will be made within four (4) to six (6) weeks.

General Wastewater

What is the difference between CVSan and EBMUD?

East Bay Municipal Utility District supplies homes with clean water, whereas CVSan is responsible for the collection and treatment of wastewater.

What do you mean by sanitary sewer system?

Sanitary sewer systems are the collection of pipes, pumps and lift stations, manholes, service lines, and other infrastructure throughout the District designed to handle and safely transport used water, body wastes, and toilet paper as sewage to a treatment plant.

What is a collection system?

A collection system is a network of pipes, manholes, clean-outs, lift stations and other structures used to collect all wastewater and transport it to a treatment plant or disposal system. CVSan is a collection system only. Treatment and disposal take place at the Castro Valley/Oro Loma Wastewater Treatment Facility in San Lorenzo.

Sewer Overflow/Backup

I am having a sewage overflow. What do I do?

Contact CVSan immediately to report a sewage overflow. To contact CVSan during normal business hours (Monday – Friday, 7:00 am - 4:00 pm), please call (510) 537-0757. For after hours (weekdays between 4:00 pm – 7:00 am and weekends) please contact CVSan on-call personnel at (510) 506-5821.

When there's a sewer backup what should I do?

When a backup occurs, contact CVSan’s Main Office at 510-537-0757 during business hours (7:00 a.m.-4:00 p.m. Mon-Fri) or (510) 506-5821 after hours.

What causes a sanitary sewer to backup?

Most sewer backups happen because the line is plugged with an obstruction. However, backups can be caused by several factors including the condition of the sanitary sewer system itself, natural phenomena such as earth movement, heavy rainfall, and the incorrect usage of the system by the public.

Some common backup causes are:

- Solids / debris – Typical solids that buildup in the pipe and cause backups are dirt, hair, bones, tampons, paper towels, kitty litter, diapers, broken dishware, garbage, concrete, and debris.

- Fat/Oil/Grease - When fat, oil or grease is discharged into a sewer system they will solidify and, after a while, can build up and plug drain lines in your building or complex. They can also plug the sewer lines owned by the District, thus increasing the maintenance cost to the District. Plugged sewers can also cause flooding of nearby private homes and businesses.

- Tree Root infiltration – Tree roots can cause backups. Roots can infiltrate the pipe system and block the wastewater flow.

- Water inflow/infiltration – Rainwater entering the public sewer line can cause system problems and overflows. If the sanitary sewers only transported wastewater, backups would only occur when obstructions were present in sewer pipes. However, during certain wet weather conditions, sanitary sewers can become overloaded with groundwater or storm water runoff so they become surcharged or overloaded. This results in backups into lower levels and basements, or slow running services.

- Structural defects in pipes and manholes – Significant sags, bellies in the line, cracks, holes, protruding laterals, misaligned pipe, offset and open joints and collapsing pipe material are all possible causes of backups.

What will the District do when a backup occurs?

CVSan will assess the backup to determine if the blockage is in the public sewer line or the property owner’s private sewer lateral. CVSan will clear blockages that occur in the public sewer line only. Property owners are responsible for blockages that occur in their private sewer lateral, located within two (2) feet of the foundation wall of the building and extending to and including the connection to the public sewer line.

If it is determined that the public sewer line is blocked, only CVSan has the authority to clear the system. If the public sewer line is clear, the District’s representative may advise the property owner to contact a plumbing contractor to perform maintenance to their private sewer lateral.

Manhole Lids

What is the purpose of manhole lids?

The manholes circular metal lid usually located in the middle (sometimes to the side) of the roadway are for access to the sanitary sewer pipe. Only authorized District personnel can remove the manhole. Unauthorized entry into manholes is extremely dangerous and strictly prohibited.

Easement

What is an Easement?

An Easement is a legal document that conveys limited property rights from the Grantor (Property Owner) to the Grantee (Castro Valley Sanitary District). This document is usually recorded in the office of the Alameda County Recorder. A sanitary sewer easement creates a non-exclusive, perpetual right to use a portion of your property for sanitary sewer purposes. This provides the District with access rights to repair, replace, inspect, enlarge, change, maintain, test and/or remove the sanitary sewer located within the easement.

Who owns and maintains the Easement?

The Property Owner continues to own the land and has only given up defined rights on the portion of land used for the easement. Maintenance of the property within the easement is the responsibility of the Property Owner.

What is the size and location of the Easement?

The easement is typically ten feet wide (five feet on either side of the sanitary sewer), however, the size may vary. The location will be determined from recorded maps or a grant of easement document. If you are unfamiliar with the size and location of your easement please contact your title company or the District at (510) 537-0757.

Who can enter my property?

The District, if it has an easement, may go onto the easement at any time. The District may, on occasion, have a Contractor present to perform specific tasks relating to the District's operations. We will make an effort to notify you prior to entry, however, in the case of an emergency we may need to enter without prior notification. Please request, at any time, to see District personnel photo identification cards, or contact the District at (510) 537-0757.

Can I make improvements within the Easement?

Easement are typically granted to the District with the understanding that the property owner may make improvements to the surface such as fences, asphalt paving, trees, irrigation and lighting systems or similar improvements. As part of the agreement, the District is permitted to remove any of these improvements for the purpose of maintaining and/or replacing the sanitary sewer. Please note that the District is not liable for any damage to your improvements.

What does this mean to me?

Do not place planters or any other objects objects on manhole covers.

Fences and gates are not to be constructed over manhole covers.

No permanent structures are to be erected within the easement location.

Keep the location of the easement clear of debris and material, especially around manhole access points.

Planting of trees within the easement is not permitted without prior approval from the District.

• For more information on keeping the area clear within the easement, please contact the District at (510) 537-0757.

What is an encroachment on an easement?

An encroachment is a physical intrusion in an area of the easement contrary to the agreement. The District may require that any unauthorized encroachments be removed at the property owner's expense. All encroachments on easements require written approval of the District by way of an Encroachment Agreement.

Are there penalties for locating structures or improvements on an easement?

The property owner may be faced with all costs of removal and any associated damages resulting from unauthorized structures or improvements on land subject to an easement.