Contact Information

Recycling Coordinator
Raymond Antaya
2200 East Main Road
Portsmouth, RI 02871
(401) 643-0359


Town of Portsmouth, RI

Town of Portsmouth, RI

On Thursday, February 1, 2018, the Town of Portsmouth converted its Transfer Station residential waste drop-off program to a new pay-as-you-throw (PAYT) waste reduction program.  With this program, residential trash is only accepted when residents place it in official Portsmouth PAYT bags.

Why make this change?  For many very good reasons.

  • Residents can save money. With the new, more equitable PAYT program, residents pay only for the garbage they throw away—not for their neighbors’ trash too!
  • Portsmouth saves. If there’s less trash generated, Portsmouth pays less to manage it.  These savings—which can be substantial—can be rerouted back into the community.
  • The environment is better preserved: When residents throw away less, recycle more, and “lighten the load” in any number of other ways, landfills last longer, greenhouse gas emissions are reduced, millions of BTUs of energy are saved, and natural resources last longer.

Remember, by recycling more you’ll produce less trash, which means you’ll use fewer trash bags. The new PAYT program lets you take control of your waste disposal costs!   All authorized recyclables and diversion materials are included in the Transfer Station sticker fee and PAYT bags are NOT required for those items.

Bag Costs Chart PortsmouthRI

(Click to see larger image)


Portsmouth This Week


Where Do I Buy the Bags?

The new Town of Portsmouth’s PAYT trash bags are conveniently available in a variety of stores throughout Portsmouth and surrounding towns.  They will be available in 3 sizes and are priced as follows:

  • Package of 10 mini bags (8-gallon) cost $10.
  • Package of 8 small bags (15-gallon) cost $10.
  • Package of 5 large bags (33-gallon) cost $10.

You may purchase them at the following locations:

Don’t see your favorite store?  Ask if they’d like to carry them and contact the Town of Portsmouth

Store NameStreet AddressPhone Number
Clements' Marketplace2575 East Main Road(401) 683-0180
Cumberland Farms3166 East Main Road(401) 682-1733
Cumberland Farms1812 East Main Road(401) 682-1648
CVS10 Turnpike Ave(401) 682-2098
Domina's Agway1348 East Main Road(401) 683-1203
Green Grocer934 East Main Road(401) 683-0007
Little Corner Store & Deli 903 Anthony Road(401) 683-4318
One Stop Building Supply Center236 JT Connell Hwy, Newport(401) 847-8460
Patriot Petroleum3302 East Main Street(401) 293-5969
Patriot Petroleum2340 West Main Road(401) 742-3408
Portsmouth Ace Hardware3001 East Main Road(401) 683-4100
Prudence Variety837 Narragansett, Prudence Island(401) 682-4357
Rite-Aid2456 East Main Road(401) 683-3062
Seabra Supermarket1150 Hope Street, Bristol(401) 254-0644
Stop and Shop1360 Main Street, Middletown(401) 849-5510

How the Program Works

Please click here to view the Transfer Station Application and Rules.

All regular household trash must be bagged in the authorized trash bags before being disposed of at the Transfer Station.  Items not in designated bags will NOT be accepted.  No exceptions will be made.

Always separate your recyclables.  You and the Town save since there is no fee to deposit recyclables at the Transfer Station or at the landfill in Johnston.

The following “Diversion Materials” should not be placed in the orange trash bags and should be deposited in the special bins located at the Transfer Station:

  • Yard waste
  • Asphalt, brick and concrete (ABC)
  • Construction/demolition debris (C&D) (See the Transfer Station Rules for information on C&D disposal – fees apply)
  • Metal or empty propane tanks, with the valve removed

Do not place the following items in the trash bags:

  • Recyclables (they go in the recyclables bin at the Transfer Station)
  • Long-lasting lithium batteries, rechargeable batteries, or any type of vehicle battery
  • Hazardous materials/waste or electronic equipment (e-waste). Please note that hazardous materials and e-waste must be disposed of during special collection events or brought directly to RI Resource Recovery (RIRRC) in Johnston.  Call RIRRC first for information: (401) 942-1430 ext. 241.
  • Hot ashes or flammable materials such as oil, gas, or paint

For detailed information on what can be recycled, visit RI Resource Recovery’s A-Z list

Recycling will reduce your cost, since there is no additional fee to recycle allowed items. The more you recycle, the less trash you have to put into the PAYT bags and the more money you’ll save!

Please note:  You should never use the orange bags for recyclables.


What Can I Recycle?

Recycling is Easy with Single Stream.  The Portsmouth Transfer Station collects Single Stream Recycling!  That means you can put all your recyclables in one bin.  Cardboard must be flattened and cannot be larger than 3’ x 5’.

Please see below for the items that are accepted for recycling. Remember, the more you recycle, the more you save!

Please recycle:

MixedPaper Cardboard
Plastic Bottles and Jars (clean and empty containers with lids and caps ON, rinsed when possible, 5 gallons or less)
Glass bottles and jars (clean and empty containers with caps OFF)

Metal cans and Aluminum (clean and empty containers, rinsed when possible, bunch up clean foil)
Paper and Cardboard
  • Plastic Soda, Water & Drink Bottles

  • Plastic Food & Household Bottles/Jars
    (screw top bottles and jars, ex. ketchup, mayonnaise, detergent, shampoo)

  • Plastic Tubs & Lids
    (ex. yogurt, margarine, cottage cheese

  • Plastic Produce, Deli & Bakery Containers, Cups, Trays (take-out containers, berries/produce containers)

  • All glass colors

  • Steel, tin, and aluminum cans

  • Clean aluminum pie plates, trays, and foil (please bunch)

  • Magazines & Catalogs

  • All newspapers & inserts

  • Paperboard (cereal boxes, paper towel rolls, etc.) & paper bags

  • Cardboard – please flatten

  • Pizza boxes – greasy ok, remove food

  • Office paper, Junk mail (Staples, paperclips, spirals, & plastic envelope windows are OK)

  • Brown Bags

  • Phone books

Please do not include:

  • No plastic bags or plastic utensils

  • No polystyrene (Styrofoam)

  • No bulky plastics (buckets, crates) or toys

  • No flower pots

  • No containers that contained hazardous waste

  • No windows or mirrors

  • No light bulbs (fluorescent bulbs should be disposed of properly)

  • No dishes, ceramics, or Pyrex

  • No containers that contained hazardous waste

  • No chains, wires or hangers

  • No recyclables with food waste

  • No napkins, paper towels, or tissues

  • No frozen food boxes

  • No gift wrap

  • No books (please use book bin)

  • No foam padding

For additional information on disposal options for items such as yard waste, C&D, e-waste, appliances, and other items, please visit the Town of Portsmouth’s website.

Wondering if something is recyclable? Please see Rhode Island Resource Recovery’s A-Z list


Frequently Asked Questions

How do I get more information on the Transfer Station?

Please visit http://www.portsmouthri.com/181/Portsmouth-Recycles for general questions regarding recycling and http://www.portsmouthri.com/182/Transfer-Station-Solid-Waste.

Is there a limit to the amount of materials I can recycle?

No. The Town of Portsmouth encourages residents to recycle as much as they can. The more you recycle, the fewer bags you will need to purchase and the more money you save.

How does this program work?

Purchase a Transfer Station sticker at the Tax Collector’s office at Portsmouth Town Hall and affix it to your passenger side windshield upper right corner, just below the tint. Then, simply buy orange Portsmouth PAYT bags at retail stores throughout the town and nearby area, and dispose of your trash in these bags as you normally would. Only the trash you put in these bags will be accepted.

How is this program good for the people of Portsmouth?

In general, Portsmouth’s PAYT program may bring municipal, residential, and environmental benefits.
• Residents may benefit in a number of ways.
– The program is more equitable. Right now, every household, regardless of size, pays the same fee. With the new program, people who generate less trash would pay less by using fewer bags. It reminds people to recycle more.
– The more a community can recycle, the greater the chances of increasing its job opportunities in the recycling/reuse industries.
– With the choice of how much they want to recycle, residents now have more control of their trash bills.
• Environmental benefits come from a slowdown in the growth of landfill space, as well as reduced greenhouse gas emissions and water and soil contamination.
• Municipalities benefit from savings in reduced tipping fees and possibly from earnings from recycling revenue.

Why do these bags cost more than the bags I'm currently using?

The official Portsmouth PAYT trash bags covers the cost of transport and disposal of the waste at Central Landfill in RI.

What about large families?

If large families buy more than smaller families, they will have more to throw away and will have to buy more trash bags. This program gives them a chance and an incentive to lower their costs by recycling everything they can.

What is PAYT?

“PAYT” stands for Pay-As-You-Throw. The Pay-As-You-Throw system is one in which residents pay a basic fee to cover the fixed costs of trash management and also a user fee for the amount used—much like the way we use and pay for electricity, water, or gas. Portsmouth’s PAYT program is based on a pay-per-bag basis.

Isn't pay-as-you-throw a hardship on senior citizens?

Because many seniors produce less waste than other residents, mini (8-gallon) bags are available for seniors (and anyone else who generates small amounts of trash).

Isn’t PAYT a hardship on low-income households?

To the contrary, pay-as-you-throw gives low-income residents the opportunity to control their expenses for solid waste disposal—an opportunity that they currently do not have.


More Information

The Recycling Coordinator, Ray Antaya, has varied hours.  His office is located at Town Hall, 2200 East Main Road, Portsmouth.  Phone (401) 643-0359.  Email Ray at rantaya@portsmouthri.com.