Frequently Asked Questions

The Waste Management Department has compiled a list of Frequently Asked Questions that we have heard from residents over the past few years, if you have a question that is not on this list or require clarification please feel free to give us a call using the contact information at the bottom of the page. 

 What is my collection day for garbage and recycling?
The City is divided into five geographical areas for the collection of garbage and recycling, with each area being collected  on a different weekday. Check this map to find out which day of the week your garbage is collected.
 When I should I place my garbage and recycling boxes at the curb for collection? 
Place your garbage at the curb after 7 p.m. the night before or prior to 7 a.m. on the day of your regular collection day.
 Is there a limit to the amount of garbage I can place at the curb?

Yes, as of April 1, 2019, household garbage will be limited to 6 bags or 3 containers of garbage per residence. This limit applies to all residences with 6 units or less. Therefore if you live in a 6 plex each residence would be permitted to place out 6 bags each for a total of 36 bags. 

Multi-Residential Complexes, so those buildings with 7 or more units, are limited to two bags per unit. Therefore a 10 unit apartment would only be permitted to place out 20 bags of garbage to the road in the appropriate containers. 

Bags and containers must conform to weight and size limitations, see the Garbage and Recycling page  for more information.

 Can I place home furnishings (like a couch) to the curb on my regular collection day? 
No, as of April 1, 2019, the City no longer provides a large item/bulky waste collection. For more information on large item collection and a list of contractors visit the Other Waste page here
 Can I place old TVs and other electronics at the curb on my regular collection day? 
Electronic waste such as old TVs and computers will not be collected at the curb. Residents can drop off their e-waste free  of charge at the City of Cornwall Landfill Site at 2590 Cornwall Centre Road during regular operating hours (7:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. Monday to Friday and 7:30 a.m. to 12 p.m. on Saturday). Visit our special programs page for more information. 
 What do I do with leaf and yard waste?
The City of Cornwall provides a special collection of leaf and yard waste in both the spring and fall. For more information, visit the Leaf and Yard Waste page. Outside of these special collection periods, residents are encouraged to use mulching techniques to reduce volume of leaves and use backyard composters. For more info on composting, visit our leaf, yard, and organic waste page
 How do I dispose of hazardous materials?
Household hazardous materials are accepted at the City Landfill Site on selected days. For a list of specific dates and accepted materials, visit the Special programs page.
 Does the City of Cornwall offer composting services? 

The City of Cornwall offers a year round composting service for leaf and yard waste materials only. Leaf and yard waste is is collected seasonally at the City of Cornwall, with collection beginning in April and ending in May, and fall collection beginning in September and ending in November. The material collected curbside is used in our composting program to create fertile compost for residents to take from the landfill free of charge. 

Should a resident be interested in home composting they should visit our leaf, yard, and organic waste page for more information. 

 How can I purchase a recycling bin?
The City of Cornwall does not provide its residents with free recycling bins. Recycling bins can be purchased from City Hall at 360 Pitt Street Monday-Friday 8:30am-4:30pm for $5.80 with tax. 
 Why should I recycle? 

Recycling is an important part of waste diversion, which is the movement of materials away from the landfill. Landfills are used to deposit garbage and collect all of the organic remnants once those materials break down which happens over hundred of years. Materials that are often recycled are those that take thousands of years to break down, and are items that can be easily turned into something new, rather then waiting for them to break down. 


Last year the City of Cornwall residents recycled aluminium, tin, steel, plastic, paper, cardboard, mattresses, electronics, and hazardous waste. By recycling these items, Cornwall residents saved space in the landfill and also generated revenue to help offset the costs of waste management. Last year the blue box program alone generated $540,000.00 in revenue. 


Recycling only works if everyone does their part, grab a blue box or a clear bag and fill it with your household recyclables, do not forget the recycling in other areas of the home outside of the kitchen! Cornwall has a weekly curbside recycling program, so you can place your recycling out once a week on your collection day to help the City divert more waste from the landfill. 

 How much longer will we be able to use the current City of Cornwall Landfill Site? 

Each year the City of Cornwall completes a volumetric scan of the landfill which determines how much space we have remaining. Based on 2018's volumetric scanning, the landfill has capacity until about 2030. This number often fluctuates based on the amount of waste coming in, therefore it may increase one year and decrease the next. It is important to note that this is an estimate for the remaining life and it is important to begin planning for the future of our waste management, even though 2030 may seem like a long time from now. 

The City will continue to implement waste diversion programs (as outlined in our Solid Waste Management Master Plan - click here to read) to help slow the filling of the landfill site, as planning for and constructing a new landfill will cost the City millions of dollars. Visit the Waste Management Facilities  page for more information. 

 What does it cost the City of Cornwall to offer garbage and recycling services? What does it cost me?

Currently it costs the City $120.00 per household per year for garbage collection, and $60.00 per household per year for recycling collection. A total of $180.00 per household per year. 

Currently every household in Cornwall pays around $48.00 per year on their taxes to cover garbage and recycling collection, and all other waste management services provided by the City of Cornwall. The remaining $132.00 per househould per year is financed through tipping fees and recycling grants. 

 How do I get rid of a mattress and box spring?

Mattresses and box springs are not accepted in our curbside garbage or recycling program. Mattresses and box springs must be brought to the City of Cornwall Landfill site, where they are recycled into coats, shoes, and other items. 

Mattress and box spring recycling is saving a lot of space at the Cornwall Landfill, however it is costly to recycle mattresses and box springs, therefore residents delivering a mattress to the City of Cornwall should be aware that there is a $15.00  fee per item. 

For example if a resident were to bring one mattress and one box spring to the landfill and no other materials, the cost would be $30.00. 

Residents should be aware that if they are purchasing a new mattress the company supplying you with the new mattress can take your old mattress back from you and dispose of it for you. This would save you the transportation and fees associated with delivering your mattress and box spring to the Landfill to be recycled. 

Visit our special programs page for more information. 

 What do I do if one of my neighbours is not following the Solid Waste By-Law? 

In Cornwall all solid waste at the curb must meet the Solid Waste By-Law 076-1994. If you feel your neighbour or someone on your street is not meeting the requirements you may submit this form and the City will send a by-law officer out to look at the issue. Your information will remain confidential throughout the process. 

Common by-law issues are: 

  • Garbage out on the wrong day or out too early
  • Recycling out on the wrong day or out too early 
  • Uncollected garbage not removed from the curb
  • Unaccepted items put out for collection (mattresses, box springs, tires, appliances, etc) 
  • Hazardous waste placed at the curb (includes used syringes, medications, and dangerous chemicals) 
  • Garbage and recycling strewn out all over the boulevard due to an animal that has not been cleaned up
 What do I do if I find large items dumped somewhere? How do I report illegal dumping?
 In Cornwall sometimes individuals will dispose of materials inappropriately. If you exploring one of our beautiful parks or driving down one of our well paved roads and you spot inappropriately disposed of materials please let us know by filling out this form. The City will send the form to the appropriate department and ensure that we are keeping our public areas clean and beautiful. 
 The recycling driver broke my blue box, what do I do now?

Sometimes the recycling drivers may accidentally break a blue box, the drivers often write this information down and will bring a new blue box to your address the following week. 

Please note if your recycling box is missing, that recycling drivers do not take or recycle blue boxes. Please search your neighbourhood for your box if it is missing and always ensure you write your address on your box to prevent it from being stolen. 

If you are concerned about your blue box being replaced please call us at 613-937-1777.

 The garbage truck pitcher broke my garbage can, what do I do now? 

Sometimes the garbage pitcher may accidentally break a garbage can. The drivers often write this information down and will bring a new garbage can to your address. 

If you are concerned about your container being replaced please call us at 613-937-1777.

 My blue box/garbage can blew away or was stolen, what do I do now? 
The City of Cornwall does not replace garbage cans or recycling boxes that have blow away in the wind or that may have been stolen. Always write your address on your blue box and garbage container so that if it does blow down the street your neighbours can return it to you. Garbage and recycling collectors will often turn the cans and recycling containers upside down to prevent them from blowing away but in some cases the wind can be very strong and they cannot prevent the boxes or containers from leaving the property. 
It's a windy day, what do I do with my recycling?  

There are two things you can do on a windy day with your recycling: 

  1. Place all your lighter items (newspaper, cardboard boxes, aluminium cans) on the bottom of your box and place the heavier items on the top like glass, tin cans, thicker cardboard. 
  2. Place all your items in a clear blue plastic bag, all the items will be contained within the blue bag, and you do not have to be concerned with your boxes blowing away. 
 I have a complaint about my garbage and recycling collection, who do I contact?

For any collection complaints or concerns it is best to contact the City at 613-937-1777. You may also visit this form if you would like to report any missed collections. Please ensure that your waste is out on time and that the collectors have not placed a coloured sticker on your waste items indicating why they have not been collected. 

The City and its collection contractor do use GPS software to track trucks and where they have been, late set outs will not be returned for. Those items with stickers will also not be returned for, the resident must follow the instructions on the sticker and can place the correct items out the following week for collection. 

 I just received an Order to Remedy in the mail, what does that mean? 

Order to Remedy is a notice the City sends to property owners when their properties are not following by-laws. Each order to remedy has information regarding which by-law has not been followed, when the property was inspected and shown to not be following the by-law and when the City requires the property to be cleaned up. Failure to comply with an Order from the City is an offence which often will result in a fine being allocated to your property taxes. Most Order to Remedy notices are sent in registered mail, not collecting this mail or ignoring the collection notice will not prevent the City from cleaning up the property and charging the fees back to the property owner. 

 I have a medical condition that creates extra waste. Can I be exempted from the bag limits?

Yes, exemptions from the bag limits are possible for residents with medical conditions.

Please fill out the application form by clicking here - or call Waste Management at 613-937-1777.

phone icon Contact Us

Waste Management Division
861 Second Street West, Box 877, Cornwall ON, K6H 5T9
T.: 613-937-1777
Email this contact
Map this location