Trash and Recycle FAQ

UPDATE:  The city will continue a new service that allows residents to drop off trash and recycling at the Shelter Road Recycling Center on Sundays from 11 a.m. to 7 p.m.. The pilot program had been scheduled to end after Dec. 31, 2023, but because it was such a success, it will now extend year-round. This convenience has long been requested and serves residents who may not be at their Ocean City homes during the regularly scheduled trash and recycling pickup days during the week. The service is not designed for bulk trash, yard waste or commercial operators. It is only for regular residential trash and recycling dropoff.

Please click on the questions below for answers to frequently asked questions for the Department of Public Works.

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Community Operations / Public Works
How do I contact the Department of Community Operations / Public Works?

Contact Phone Number:   609-399-6111 ext 9710

Henry S. Knight Building

115 12th Street

Ocean City, NJ 08226

Monday - Friday  8:30a - 4:30p
Excluding City Holidays 

What if my trash and recycling are not picked up?

If your trash and/or recycling are not picked-up, please notify the Department of Public Works as soon as possible by calling 609-399-6111 ext 9710

How do I report a street light out?

A streetlight outage can be reported directly to Atlantic City Electric by calling 1-800-642-3780 or by reporting online (click here for Atlantic Electric online )


For lights out on the boardwalk please call 609-399-6111 and ask for the Ocean City Public Works Department.Before calling, please gather the following information; the address or location of the pole and the pole number. (See diagrams )


Remember to get all the specific information that you can provide regarding the location, address, and pole number of the light. This will help with the repairs being completed in a timely manner.

If you have any further questions about light outages please call 609-399-6111 and ask for the Public Works Department.

How do I report a pot hole/sink hole?

To report a pot hole or sink hole, please notify the Department of Public Works as soon as possible by calling 609-525-9271 or click here to report it online.

Trash Information
How do I dispose of my Christmas Tree?

Christmas Trees  should be decoration and bag free and can be placed out for pick up with your regular trash & recycling collection through the end of January.

When is trash collection?

The summer trash and recycling collection schedule is (starting the second Monday in June and ending on the Saturday following Labor Day). 

Longport Bridge to north end of 9th Street Monday and Thursday (yard waste Thursday)

South side of 9th Street to north side of 28th Street, Tuesday and Friday (yard waste Tuesday)

South side of 28th Street to 59th Street, Wednesday and Saturday (yard waste Wednesday)

The winter trash and recycling collection schedule is (starting the Monday following Labor Day).
Monday is south side of 34th to 59th Streets

Tuesday is south side of 17th to north side of 34th Streets

Wednesday is south side of 9th to north side of 17th Streets

Thursday is south side of 3rd to north side of 9th Streets

Friday is Longport Bridge to north side of 3rd Streets

City ordinance limits trash/recycling/yard waste containers to 32 gallons and no heavier than 50 lbs, they must also have a lid. Recycling and yard waste containers must have labels on them.

How do I dispose of Wood?

You may place small amounts of clean wood out for regular household trash collection.  The wood must be cut into 4’ or smaller lengths, it must be tied and bundled with a maximum weight of 50 lb per bundle and 6 bundles are allowed per trash pickup.

Wood of any type is NOT accepted at the Shelter Road Recycling Center.  For contaminated wood and/or large quantities you may contact a private hauler to dispose of or take the material to the Cape May County Municipal Utilities Authority.

For more information visit  or click HERE for locations, hours and further waste information.

What are bulk trash items and how do I dispose of them?

One bulk item is permitted per trash day.
Items Permitted:

SINKS & TOILETS: Sink and Toilet are trash items and can be put out for regular trash. Sink bases should be disposed of at the Cape May County dump .

PAINT:  Must be dried.  Cat litter can be used to dry up paint, then double bag the cans and place in the trash for pick up.  Must be less than 50lb.s

MATTRESSES:  Box Spring and Mattress is considered one bulk item and can be put out on your regular trash day

CARPET:  Must be cut into 4 foot bundles, limit of 6 bundles per pick up day

HOUSE FURNITURE:  One piece of furniture per trash day.

EXERCISE EQUIPMENT:  One piece per trash day.

For further information, please call 609 399 6111 or click here to email your question.

What is considered "White Goods"?

For White Goods Pick Up, please call 609 399 6111 ext 9710 to schedule for the 1st or 3rd Wednesday of each month.  All items must be called in prior to pick up.



BICYCLES:  Tires must be taken off and only the metal will be picked up.


GRILLS:  Propane tanks must be detached from the grill

HOT WATER HEATERS:  Must be drained of all water

LAWN MOWERS:  All fluids must be drained such as gas and oil

REFRIGERATORS/FREEZERS:  Doors must be taken off or taped securely for safety.

STOVES/TELEVISIONS:  Must be over 50lbs and over 3 feet wide.  If smaller, please take to Shelter Road.



For further information, please call 609 399 6111 or click here to email your question.

What size trash can is acceptable?

City ordinance limits trash/recycling/yard waste containers to 32 gallons and no heavier than 50 lbs, they must also have a lid.

Yard Waste Information

Yard Waste is grass clippings, leaves, trimmings from prunings and branches that are less than 4 feet in length and bundled.  Yard waste is collected the same day as trash in the off-season. When there are two trash and recycling pickups per week, see schedule below for yard waste. Please place your yard waste in paper bags that can be purchased at the local hardware stores or supermarkets or in containers that are properly marked “Yard Waste.” Stickers can be obtained at City Hall, the Knight Building at 12th and Haven, and any Information Center.

Longport Bridge to north end of 9th Street: yard waste Thursday

South side of 9th Street to north side of 28th Street: yard waste Tuesday

South side of 28th Street to 59th Street: yard waste Wednesday

What if my condo has private collection?

If your homeowners' association provides private collection, please call your collection contractor directly for information on trash, bulk trash, white goods and recycling pickup.

Are there changes to the pickup schedule during holiday weeks?

The only changes fall in the weeks of Thanksgiving, Christmas and New Year's Day. There is no collection on those holidays. Routes that are missed are collected the next day, and all subsequent routes are pushed back one day for the holiday week.


Recycle Information
Who needs to recycle?

In Ocean City as in the State of New Jersey, it is the law to recycle. However, in Ocean City, we think of recycling as much more than a mandate. It is an aspect of good citizenship and environmental stewardship. Therefore, we ask all citizens and visitors to comply with our program to maintain the high quality of life that they come to expect from our island.

City employees, homeowners, renters, visitors, business owners and students all need to recycle to make the program work.

The City of Ocean City offers free “curbside” (including alleys) recycling to all households and businesses in the City. For businesses to receive service, they must prepare recyclables for collection the same way as households and set at the curb or alley for pick-up.

How do I recycle?

All recyclable glass, plastic, tin, cardboard, and paper can be placed out for collection in the same container. See “What do I Recycle”, for in depth description of recyclable material.

Yard waste which includes grass clippings, leaves and brush should be set out in paper bags or a labeled container, except for twigs and branches which must be bundled and tied with twine and can be no greater than 4 ft. in length.

  • It is important that recyclables are not set out in plastic bags. No materials, not even trash, are allowed to be set out in plastic bags in the City of Ocean City.
  • Labels are provided for free from the City of Ocean City. Use of approved City labels is critical for proper collection as they are identifiers for collection crews.
  • It is mandatory to label your recycling and trash containers with your street address.
When do I recycle?

In Ocean City, trash and recyclables are picked up on the same day. However, in the summer when the schedule calls for twice per week pick-up, yard waste will only be picked up once per week.

When on the beach, boardwalk or around town, be sure to dispose of your recyclables in one of the many recycling containers provided.

COLLECTION SCHEDULES for curbside or alley pick-up:

Summer (mid-June to Saturday after Labor Day)

  • Mon. & Thurs. – Longport bridge to North side of 9th St. (Yard Waste-Thurs.)
  • Tues. & Fri. – South side of 9th St. to North side of 28th St. (Yard Waste-Tues.)
  • Wed. & Sat. – South side of 28th St. to 59th St. (Yard Waste-Wed.)


  • Mon. – South side of 34th St. to 59th St.
  • Tue. – South side of 17th St. to North side of 34th ST.
  • Wed. – South side of 9th St. to North side of 17th St
  • Thurs. – South side of 3rd St. to North side of 9th St.
  • Fri. – Longport bridge to North side of 3rd St.


Recyclables can also be brought to the Shelter Road facility operated by the City of Ocean City Public Works Department. Absolutely no trash will be accepted at this facility.

Summer: Monday-Saturday, 8AM - 3PM (Memorial Day through Columbus Day)
Winter: Mon, Wed, Fri, Sat, 9 AM – 3 PM

What do I recycle?

RECYCLE Bottles, Cans & Paper-ALL IN ONE!

  • Recycle bottles and cans
  • Glass containers - any color
  • Plastic - bottles, jars and jugs #1through #7
  • Aluminum tin and metal containers
  • Paper-office paper, junk mail, magazines, food boxes, pizza boxes (minimal oil contamination), paperback books, telephone books, corrugated cardboard

NOT Acceptable:

  • Glass - Light bulbs, mirrors, drinking glasses, Pyrex™ and dishes.
  • Plastic - Oil, antifreeze, paint, spray paint, chemical or fertilizer bottles; plastic bags; hard molded plastic items
  • Any metal item
  • Oil soaked cardboard/paper products

Think outside the refrigerator box. Bottles and cans recyclables are present in all parts of the house, not just in the kitchen.

Remember to recycle empty shampoo, conditioner, soap, lotion, hair product, shaving cream, aerosol deodorant and detergent containers. 

Think about how much paper is used in daily life. Almost all of it can be recycled. Remember flyers, note paper, even greeting cards can all be recycled.

Plastic Bags can be recycled at many convenience and grocery stores but not in your household recycling.

Metal items - Bed Frames, grills, bicycles, etc. can be recycled at the Shelter Road Recycling Center.


RECYCLE Yard Waste

  • Grass Clippings
  • Leaves
  • Trimmings from pruning
  • Branches – must be less than 4 ft. in length and bundled
Why should I recycle?

There are many reasons to recycle both environmental and economic. There is truly no downside, especially when the City of Ocean City makes recycling very convenient.

RECYCLE for the Environment

  • Save trees! Recycling paper that can be made into new products will reduce the number of trees that need to be cut down.
  • Saving trees helps to reduce greenhouse gases and in turn will help combat global warming.
  • Save our petroleum resources! Yes, plastic is a petroleum byproduct, so returning used plastic into the manufacturing stream reduces our reliance on this non-renewable resource.
  • Save energy! Recyclables are a renewable and available resource. Using recyclables for manufacturing decreases energy used for logging and mining to acquire virgin resources.
  • Save space! Land is becoming a precious commodity in southern New Jersey, so reducing the amount of materials we put into our landfill prolongs its useful life.

RECYCLE for the Economy

  • Save money! By recycling more, the City of Ocean City can save thousands of dollars just by increasing our recycling rate. 
Electronics Recycling




The following covered electronic devices (CED’S) must be recycled:


These items are no longer permitted to be placed out for trash collection and/or included in your trash pickup.

CED’s should be taken to the Ocean City Recycling Center located at 1 Shelter Road to be properly disposed of.*

*Arrangements can be made for the pickup of CED’s that are over 50lbs in weight and 4’ feet in width.

Please call OC DPW for additional information 609-399-6111 ext: 9710.

What is permitted at the Shelter Road Recycling Center?

Shelter Road Recycling Center

Located on Shelter Road just off of Tennessee Avenue

Summer Hours

Memorial Day through Columbus Day: Monday through Saturday 8am to 3pm

Winter Hours

Monday, Wednesday, Friday and Saturday 9am to 3pm

Closed Thanksgiving, Christmas and New Years Day

Accepted Material

(ID required, loads can be inspected, out of town homeowners should present utility or tax bill)

Residents and Home Owners Only

GRASS CLIPPINGS & LEAVES:  All other vegetative waste is allowed.  NO sand or dirt.

BRUSH:  Tree Branches, limbs, stumps, tree trunks, shrubs, and old firewood no longer than 10' in length.

CONCRETE:  Cement Brick Blocks are accepted.  No metal posts or rebar.

TIRES:  Can be on or off the rims, must be less than 12" wide across the tread and less than 4' in height

Residents, Home Owners, Business AND Contractors

SCRAP METAL:  Less than 20' in length (no paint cans, wood, plastic, glass, hazardous waste, or electronic waste in scrap metal container)

Small Engines: Only accepted with all fluids removed.

MIXED PAPER: Cardboard, Newspaper, Office Paper, Pizza Boxes.

COMINGLED CONTAINERS:  Glass, Aluminum, Tin and Plastic food and beverage containers (Plastic #1 through #7 up to 2 ½ gallons).

ELECTRONICS:  Covered Electronic Devices (CED’s)

Computers, Monitors, Laptops, Televisions.  

Prohibited Material              

Trash, garbage, wood, rigid plastic (non-bottles larger than 2.5 gallons), construction debris, oil, antifreeze, car parts, or motors, batteries, paints, thinners, pesticides or their containers, any hazardous waste and white goods / appliances .

FOR SAFETY, children must remain in vehicle at all times!

Revised 9-5-13

What are the hours for the Shelter Road Recycling Center?

Shelter Road Recycling Center

Located on Shelter Road just off of Tennessee Avenue

Summer Hours

Memorial Day through Columbus Day: Monday through Saturday 8am to 3pm

Winter Hours

Monday, Wednesday, Friday and Saturday 9am to 3pm

Closed Thanksgiving, Christmas and New Years Day

What else can I do?

RECYCLE Scrap Metal – at the Shelter Road Recycling Drop-off area off of Tennessee Avenue.

FREECYCLE – You can help to reduce waste by joining Ocean City Freecycle, a web-based group whose members offer and receive items in good condition for free. Visit for more information.

By joining, you can see what items members are offering and if it is something you can use, all you need to do is contact that member and arrange for pick-up. No money ever changes hands. If you have something to offer, list it, and it will go to good use rather than to the landfill where it will simply take up space.

Participate in other Cape May County recycling programs where you can:

  • Properly dispose of Household Hazardous Waste (HHW)– The Cape May County Municipal Utilities Authority (CMCMUA) hosts two HHW Days per year in the Spring and Fall where you can get rid of household cleaning products, pesticides, solvents, etc. in an environmentally responsible manner. Visit and click on “Solid Waste Disposal” for more information.
  • RECYCLE Paint – Residents, businesses, institutions, municipalities, and non-profit agencies can bring leftover oil-based and latex paint as well as stains and finishes to the CMCMUA Transfer Station during regular business hours. There is a per can fee for 1 gallon size and larger. Smaller containers and spray paint are free. . Visit and click on “Recycling Information” for specific guidelines.
  • RECYCLE Tires – Residents may bring up to 5 tires to the CMCMUA Landfill or Transfer Station. There is a small fee per tire. Truckloads of tires are accepted at the Landfill only at a per ton rate.
  • RECYCLE Used Motor Oil, Oil Filters, and Antifreeze – Uncontaminated used motor oil, uncontaminated antifreeze , and drained oil filters are accepted free at the CMCMUA Landfill and Transfer Station. Limit 3 gallons and 3 filters per day. Kerosene and #2 home heating oil may be mixed with used motor oil. Also check with local service stations to see if they accept these items.
  • RECYCLE Electronics – Computers, Televisions, and other consumer electronics are accepted at the CMCMUA Transfer Station. There is a minimum per load charge and above that level the rate is a few cents per pound. At the HHW Days, two units are accepted for free.
  • RECYCLE Auto and Boat Batteries – These types of lead acid batteries are accepted free at the CMCMUA Landfill and Transfer Station. Also check with local service stations or auto and marine supply stores to see if they accept these items. 
Paper Shredding & Electronics Recycling
When will the City hold Paper Shredding & Electronics Recycling Days?

Ocean City will holds semi-annual Paper Shredding Days 8 a.m. to 3 p.m. on the first Saturday of May and on the Saturday of Columbus (Indigenous Peoples) Day Weekend. 

The event is free to residents and property owners in Ocean City. Please bring a driver's license or other proof of residency/home ownership.

Paper Shredding:

Paper only; paper clips & staples acceptable.

Paper shredding by a highly secure, mobile shredding unit.

Electronic Recycling:

Televisions, Stereos, Camcorders

Computers, Monitors, Laptops & Desk Phones

Also Collecting CFL Light Bulbs

For more information call 609-399-6111 ext 9710 or 9711

General Information
Phone Numbers
Emergencies: Dial 911
115 East 12th Street
Ocean City,

Monday - Friday
8:45am - 4:30pm