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Tidy-Up Tacoma provides clean-up services in our shared public spaces and supports cleaner, healthier neighborhoods for those who work, live and play here. 


From our neighborhoods and parks to the Thea Foss Waterway, Tacoma has a proud history of cleaning up our public spaces so that they can be enjoyed by residents and visitors. City Council routinely hears from residents that they would like to see the City enhance services that support clean and healthy neighborhoods. In response, City Council approved a new local excise tax on solid waste services as part of the 2023-2024 biennial budget. The funds generated from this tax will fund and expand community cleanup programs, like Tidy-Up Tacoma, that were previously funded with one-time money from the American Rescue Plan Act and other City funds. 


How much will I pay? 

The excise tax is 6% of residential and commercial solid waste bills and went into effect April 1, 2023. On average, a residential customer with a 60-gallon garbage container will see about $3 per month added to their bill. Customers should have seen the tax for the first time on their May or June 2023 bills depending on billing cycle, as “local excise tax”. 


What does the tax fund? 

Through this local excise tax, Tidy-Up Tacoma will expand and provide: 

  • Coordinated litter, debris, and graffiti cleanup services in the public right-of-way  
  • Trail maintenance 
  • Maintenance and replacement of public trash cans in business districts  
  • Cleanup at and around encampment sites 
  • Full time litter crew employees to proactively address issues 
  • Bill credit payment assistance to ease the burden on low-income households 
  • Opportunities for the community to inform Tidy-Up Tacoma programs and services 

The funds generated from this tax will continue our collective efforts to ensure public spaces including streets, sidewalks, trails, and business districts are clean and healthy for those who live, work and play there.  


How can I help determine where and how the City will focus Tidy-Up Tacoma efforts? 

The community plays an important role in determining where and how the City will focus Tidy-Up Tacoma efforts. We’ve already begun having conversations with community organizations to ensure priorities of underrepresented communities are reflected in how and where Tidy-Up Tacoma services are expanded and implemented. We are also developing ways for every Tacoma resident to share their priorities through online and in person opportunities in Summer 2023. Residents will be able to: 

  • Help identify where and how the City should focus Tidy-Up Tacoma efforts
  • Share ideas on how to improve existing community cleanup programs like Adopt-a-Spot and Litter Patrol
  • Report litter, debris and graffiti issues through Tacoma FIRST 311
  • Collaborate with the City on new ways to engage all Tacoma residents in supporting a cleaner city
  • To sign up for Tidy-Up Tacoma updates, click this link to subscribe.

Will the Tidy-Up Tacoma Business District Program continue?

Yes, the Tidy-Up Tacoma program that focused on business districts will continue. Find out more about the Tidy-Up Tacoma Business District Program here.


Tidy-Up Tacoma Data Dashboard

Check out the Tidy-Up Tacoma Data Dashboard for a summary of data relating to garbage and litter cleanup throughout Tacoma as part of the Tidy-Up Tacoma Program. View the data dashboard here.


Tidy-Up Tacoma Translated Fact Sheets


What community cleanup programs exist under Tidy-Up Tacoma? 

The City of Tacoma offers a variety of programs and services to keep our homes, neighborhoods and environment clean and healthy. Below is a list of resources available to residents that aid in both personal and community-wide waste:


Adopt-a-Spot & Neighborhood Litter Patrol

Help reduce litter and keep our public spaces clean by volunteering with the Adopt-a-Spot or Neighborhood Litter Patrol program. Volunteers will receive free safety and litter pick-up supplies. Call (253) 591-5000 or click here for more information.

Adopt-a-Storm Drain Volunteer 15 minutes, twice a month, for cleaner waterways and healthier communities. Storm drains flow directly to rivers, lakes, creeks, and the Puget Sound, acting as a conduit for trash and organic pollutants. Adopt-a- Storm Drain asks residents to adopt a storm drain in their neighborhood and keep it clear of leaves, trash, and other debris to reduce water pollution and help prevent localized flooding.


Schedule a pickup of large, bulky items. Clean out unwanted or unusable items that may be difficult to dispose of or are not accepted for regular curbside collection. Up to 3 large items and 15 boxes or bags of small items of garbage can be collected. Residential customers can use this service up to twice per year at no additional cost. Commercial customers living in a multifamily home or operating a business may use this service for a pick-up fee of $75, which will be billed to your utility account. Call (253) 502-2100, option 3 to schedule an appointment, or click here for more information.

Encampment Debris Removal

The City contracts with several companies to remove debris from active and abandoned encampments public rights-of-way. Most cleanup locations are identified by the Homeless Outreach Team and many locations are cleaned on a regular basis. To report an encampment location that many benefit from these services, please call 311 or report online using TacomaFirst311.

Green Events Program

Make your next event a green event! The Green Events Program recognizes events that have a sustainable impact, like encouraging sustainable transportation, donating food, and using recycled materials. Not-for-profit events may be eligible for Environmental Services Event Support, which may include free or discounted in-kind services such as garbage or recycling services, food waste bins, and/or portable toilets. Click here to learn more.

HIRE (Helping Individuals Experiencing Homelessness)

HIRE is a low-barrier work program that offers no-cost beautification and litter abatement services to businesses.  Tacoma businesses interested in using this service and those seeking employment through the program can contact Valeo Vocation at (253) 301-2134.

Neighborhood Dog Waste Station Help prevent stormwater pollution by sponsoring a dog waste station with bags and signage that reminds dog walkers in your neighborhood to scoop it, bag it, and throw it in the trash. Click here to learn more and to download an application.
Purple Bag Program This program provides regular waste pick-ups at select homeless encampments throughout the city and is intended to limit the harmful impacts of improperly disposed waste on human health and our environment. Purple bags are a temporary solution aimed at helping individuals experiencing homelessness maintain safe and clean living areas until they are able to connect with shelters or other housing opportunities that meet their needs. If a purple bag is found outside of a designated drop-off location, contact Tacoma FIRST 311 online or by phone at 311 and a pickup will be scheduled.
Report Water Pollution Report a spill on or near the water, dirty construction site runoff, suds in the street, leaking dumpsters, or anything besides rainwater going down the storm drain or catch basin. A City Environmental Compliance Inspector will respond to investigate and help stop the pollution. Call 311 or click here to report online.
Residential Drop-Off Containers Tacoma residents can recycle glass bottles, jars, and household batteries by dropping them off at any of the City's five drop-off locations. Some locations accept other items, like cardboard and scrap metal. For a full list of locations, hours, and what is accepted, call (253) 502-2100 or click here.
Solid Waste Management Solid Waste offers curbside garbage, recycling, and food/yard waste services, as well as self-haul options for garbage, recycling, yard waste, and household hazardous waste disposal at the Tacoma Recovery & Transfer Center. Call (253) 502-2100 or click here for more information.
Storm Drain (Catch Basin) Marking Keep our waterways clean by marking your local storm drain or catch basin. Storm drain markers remind residents that "if it hits the ground, it hits the Sound." In Tacoma, all stormwater flows untreated into the nearest creek, stream, or Commencement Bay. Click here to learn more or contact our partners a Citizens for a Healthy Bay at (253) 383-2429 to checkout a storm drain marking kit.
Street Sweeping City street sweeping crews make their way through Tacoma on a regular basis, keeping streets clean as well as preventing debris and contamination from entering catch basins and polluting our waterways. To locate your neighborhood's street sweeping schedule, click here. Postcards are also mailed out to residents in advance.
Tacoma FIRST 311

City of Tacoma staff are available 8 AM to 5 PM, Monday-Friday to answer your general questions and address issues related to the City of Tacoma government and services. To call this service within city limits, dial 311. To call outside of city limits, dial (253) 591-5000. TacomaFirst311 is also available online 24-hours a day at cityoftacoma.org/tacomafirst311. A mobile app is available for download on Apple devices here. To download the 311 app on an Android device, click here

Tacoma Recycle & Household Hazardous Waste Facility Pierce County residents can bring unusable items to the Recycle Center or Household Hazardous Waste Facility for free disposal. The Recycle Center accepts many items that may not be accepted for curbside recycling. The Household Hazardous Waste Facility accepts hazardous materials for safe and responsible disposal. To view the customer guide, click here. Visit the Solid Waste page for hours of operation and driving directions or call (253) 502-2100 with questions.