Town of Rochester Town Hall

Town of Rochester Town Hall This page is for the information relating to The Town of Rochester's Town Hall. For any additional information please call (508) 763-3871.

Operating as usual


Friday, January 15th is Christmas Tree Pickup Day! Please have your tree out by the street that morning if you would like the Highway Department to pick it up. Happy New Year Rochester! 🌲


Please be advised that ABC Disposal is delaying trash and recycling pick-up by one day this week due to the impending winter storm. Pick-up is now scheduled for Saturday. Stay safe Rochester!

2020 Hazardous Waste Day Information

2020 Hazardous Waste Day Information

2020 Hazardous Waste Day Information


A message from the Rochester Town Clerk.....

Due to a death in my family, the Town Clerk’s Office will be closed on Thursday, September 10th and Monday, September 14th. We will re-open on Tuesday, September 15th for regular office hours. I’m sorry for any inconvenience this may cause. Thank you for your understanding!

Paul Dawson, Town Clerk


How Can I Purchase a Beach Sticker?


You can submit your request for a beach sticker by mailing it (to 1 Constitution Way Rochester MA 02770) or by leaving it in the drop box next to the town hall front stairs.

Beach stickers are $20, or one (1) sticker can be obtained for free if the resident is over 70 years of age.

Please include the following: 1. A copy of the registration for each vehicle needing a sticker (the vehicle must be registered to a Rochester address). 2. A check for $20 for each beach sticker. 3. If the resident is over 70, a copy of the driver’s license is also required for proof of age. In this case, the sticker is free instead of $20. 4. If requesting multiple stickers at once, please include a note indicating which sticker is needed for which vehicle. Your sticker will be mailed to the address on your registration unless otherwise requested.

If you do not have access to a copy machine, you can drop off a check in the drop box and your documents can be e-mailed to [email protected] or [email protected]

Note: There will be no refunds on stickers, regardless of closures and restrictions.


This is when it gets serious folks. Inspection/Rejection of Recycling starts tomorrow for Week A and continues for the next 16 weeks. Week A is inspected 8 times and Week B is inspected 8 times beginning tomorrow. At 7 AM the cart inspectors will begin their routes inspecting each cart. If the cart has 3 or more of the big no’s - Plastic Bags, Plastic Wrap, Food Waste, Clothing/Linen, Tanglers (hoses, wires, chains, electronics), hard non-recyclable plastics – your cart will be tagged with an OOPSs tag.
The cart will be turned sideways, and ABC will not pick up the cart. The number of your cart/address is written down, the reason for rejection is written down, and a picture will be taken. Your cart will not be picked up until the next week. We want to eliminate any confusion over why your cart was not emptied. At the end of the inspection route your address will be called into ABC, so the driver also knows not to pick up the cart. In some towns people have run out, remove the tag, turn it back to the right direction so the driver is notified to prevent this from happening.
The recycling cart inspectors will be making two passes through each route. This way if your cart is not out at 7 AM they will have a second chance to inspect the carts prior to the 11 AM deadline. Once all the carts have been inspected, we call ABC and tell the recycling truck it can pick up in your neighborhood. You will see a delay in recycling collection in some parts of town, and earlier than normal pickups in others because the schedule has been changed to adjust for the “closed” neighborhoods due to the cart inspection.
If between inspection one and two you have cleaned your cart and want the inspector to look at it again flag them down. They are wearing neon vests and have an ID card. They want to help your cart pass. If they see just a couple of things wrong, they will try and clean up your cart – so if you see people moving things from recycling to garbage wearing a neon vest, they are trying to help you!
Please, if you can, inform your neighbors if you do not see them on Facebook or other social media sites. Yesterday I delivered 57 of the mailers to homes that had missed them, with the exception of Forbes because you all don’t have mailboxes, two or three homes on County where I was afraid I would get hit when I stopped, and I have 4 more to deliver today. Those that I could not hand deliver will be in the mail today/tomorrow. I want to thank every person who has asked questions, questioned the process, shared their concerns, and want you to know that I will continue to listen and help anyway I can.
If you want to share additional concerns, I urge you to call Town Hall. They will collect the phone calls for me and your concerns will be dealt with by the Town Administrator or me. This is just a small piece of my job as the town’s grant writer, and I want you to know that I work only a few hours a week but I will get back to you as soon as I can. Thanks again. Marcia Kessler

Recycling Update – I want to acknowledge right off the bat that given everything else currently happening in the country...

Recycling Update – I want to acknowledge right off the bat that given everything else currently happening in the country that this post may seem like the last thing anyone should worry about. If we had a crystal ball, we would have never started a recycling inspection project under these conditions, and if we are causing you additional stress I want to personally apologize. The grant contract with DEP was signed in late 2019, and I want you to know that no one in town administration ever anticipated what was about to happen. This said, our first official day of cart inspection/rejection is this Friday, June 5th, and will continue for the next 16 weeks. If you live on the Week A route and received a welcome tag your cart will be inspected this Friday. If you do nothing else please keep plastic bags, food waste, tanglers, and “bad” plastics out of your carts. I have attached some photos of carts we found while doing our initial welcome tagging. All these carts would have failed and not have been collected by ABC. You will see cups and bottles with liquid still in them. You will see baby carriages. You will see plastic bags. These do not recycle, cannot be recycled, and contaminate your whole cart.
I received the extra cards that were mailed to your homes. West Wareham addresses were left off the list by the mailer, but they assure me that the other homes received their cards. If you provided me with your address I will drop off a card on Wednesday so that you have another thing to hang on the refrigerator. 😉
If you have neighbors on our inspection route who don’t utilize the pages or the Town of Rochester website do a neighborly thing from at least a 6 foot distance and let them know to pull those plastic bags, food waste, tanglers, and bad plastics from their carts. Thank you all for your help and cooperation with this project.
Marcia Kessler


All – I am hoping that this statement will help clarify the what and why of recycling in 2020. I have spoken with the General Manager of ABC, our local DEP representative and the individual who manages all Recycling IQ efforts for the commonwealth. Everyone agrees on what can/cannot be recycled. I realize that this information may be different than what you thought or have been doing in the past concerning recycling. I do not want this to become a blame game or an “I wish I knew sooner” type of discussion, as it cannot and will not fix the past. I assure you that no one was keeping this information a secret on purpose and the Recycling IQ grant has given us the opportunity to get up to date information and support in spreading the word.
1) The informational materials you received from ABC about what can/cannot be recycled are incorrect for the current recycling market. ABC and the Commonwealth of MA agree – 100% - that the only materials that can be recycled are on the mailer. The market for recyclable materials has continued to shrink, as has what can or cannot be recycled. Just one example - even if you recycled coated cardboard beverage containers a year ago you cannot recycle them now because there is no market for this material.
2) You MUST ignore the little recycle symbol. Just because there is one does not mean it can go in your recycle bin. The only materials that can be recycled are on your mailer. No flowerpots, no hard plastics, no coated cardboard, etc. If we include hard plastics, like the lawn furniture I saw last week, we run the risk of the entire load being rejected and paying for transport out of state.
3) The biggest concerns that will lead to your cart being rejected are the following – these are non-negotiable: Plastic bags and wrap from retail stores, tanglers (hose, wires, chains, ropes, electronics etc.), ANY metal other than food or beverage cans (like the Skill Saw someone attempted last week), clothing/textiles (use Simple Recycling – the pink bag people). If you can please those out of your recycling. Your cart will pass inspection and our recycling stream will be so much cleaner.
Again – the short answer to what can/cannot be recycled is if the material you want to recycle is on the mailer – glass bottles and jars with and without labels, rinsed but not spotless, plastic bottles, jars, jugs and tubs, with and without labels, and if you lost the top throw it in anyway. Paper and cardboard – but it cannot be coated with wax or plastic, metal food and beverage cans, rinsed but not spotless. If it is not in this list it cannot be recycled and will result in an OOPS tag and it will not be picked up by ABC. If there are 3 or fewer items, we will attempt to move them to your garbage as a courtesy, but we don’t have the time to rearrange the 250 carts on the route each week. ABC holds back the truck waiting for us to finish the inspection and we do not want to delay the whole route by hours as we straighten out the cans. I truly appreciate all your questions, comments, and hope you will continue to reach out.
Please note: In answer to an expressed concern this information is also being posted on the Town of Rochester webpage under the Town Resources tab, on the Town of Rochester page, and on the other citizen run pages. If there are other information resources that are used to spread the word, please let me know and I will make that happen.

Recycling Inspection Results – We Have Work to Do!Recycling cart inspection this week showed that we have a lot of work ...
What Goes In The Bin | Recycle Smart MA

Recycling Inspection Results – We Have Work to Do!
Recycling cart inspection this week showed that we have a lot of work to do. 90% of carts would have been rejected because they contained these common unrecyclable items: Styrofoam, cartons (juice, almond milk, etc.), plastic bags – including the thick plastic that blankets come in, pill bottles, wire hangers, rope, string, fabric, fishing line, aerosol cans, and even lawn furniture!!!
Recycling carts should be limited to cardboard; paper, rinsed metal, food, and beverage cans; glass bottles and jars. This is ALL that should go into your recycling carts.
Why does this matter? A single bad cart on the route, just ONE cart, can cause rejection of the entire load. The dirty recycling cannot be taken to Covanta, it cannot be taken to a landfill in MA (both by state law) and must be driven to Connecticut or New York State. Who pays for that cost? The taxpayers of Rochester. Help us to save money by Recycling SMART.
If you are not sure what can be recycled? These resources can help you.
Carts will be rejected – meaning they will not be picked up by ABC – beginning June 5th if they contain non-recyclable items. Please use the next few weeks to become familiar with what can and cannot be recycled.

Just a reminder that the Town of Rochester Recycling IQ project will begin this Friday, May 15th on the Week B route.  K...

Just a reminder that the Town of Rochester Recycling IQ project will begin this Friday, May 15th on the Week B route. Keep a lookout between 7 and 11 AM for the 4 yellow vested cart checkers who will be familiarizing themselves with the route and placing a Recycle Smart tag on your recycling bin letting you know that your neighborhood has been selected as part of our Recycling IQ launch. If you don’t see a tag this week, please know that as we get faster at checking the routes we will expand to other areas of the town.
The cart checkers will be wearing masks and gloves and will sanitize their gloves regularly throughout the morning. We ask that if you approach the cart checkers to please maintain appropriate social distancing. The cart checkers will answer questions about what can/cannot be recycled but we also urge you to consult the Smart Recycling Guide which is being mailed to every home and post office box in the upcoming weeks for additional information. The cart checkers will refer residents with other questions or concerns to the Rochester Town Hall at 508-763-3871


Please be advised that unfortunately the Town's annual Memorial Day event has been canceled due to the Covid-19 pandemic.


On Thursday, May 7, 2020 the Sacred Heart Food Pantry will be distributing boxes of food by drive thru from 1:00 PM to 3:00 PM. Any residents of Middleborough, Lakeville, Rochester and Carver currently facing food insecurity may come to pick up a box of food, whether or not a past or current client of the food pantry, with the exception of clients who have been to the pantry within the last month.

When you arrive, you will be expected to show your driver’s license and current proof of residency. Proof of residency is a utility or tax bill, bank statement, or other document showing your physical address, which will be matched against the driver’s license. While there is a residency requirement, the USDA has temporarily waived income guidelines for receiving emergency food assistance at this time.

The pantry is located at 53 Oak Street, Middleborough, MA, however the drive thru will take place in the Pearl Street parking lot. Entrance to the parking lot will be off of Pearl Street, coming from the direction of Pierce Street. Vehicles will circle around the parking lot and exit back onto Pearl Street going towards Center Street. Volunteers will be assisting with traffic control at the four intersections around the pantry; everyone is asked to follow their directions.

For safety and traffic purposes, please arrive close to the start time of 1:00 PM. Your residency will be verified by volunteers before entering the parking lot. If you have any questions, please email or call the pantry at [email protected] or (508) 947-1717, Opt. #1.


The Town of Rochester is pleased to announce that curbside textiles recycling will resume on Monday April 27, 2020. Simple Recycling will collect pink bags of used clothing, shoes and other items on residents’ regular recycling days. Residents are encouraged to contact Simple Recycling at 866-835-5068 or [email protected] with any questions they may have about the program.


Please be advised that the Annual Town Meeting date has been moved from May 18th to June 22nd and will still be held at the Rochester Memorial School at 7:00 pm.

Also, the Town Election Date has been moved from April 8th to June 17th. Please reach out to the Town Clerk's Office (508-763-3871 X 17 or [email protected]) for any voting related questions.


Please be advised that during this time the Simple Recycling Program (pink bags) will be on hold.


Effective Tuesday, March 17th
until further notice
Rochester Town Buildings will be

Some departments will have staff available by telephone during normal business hours. There is an automated list of departments on each phone system:
Town Hall: 508-763-3871
Town Hall Annex: 508-763-5421

Payments may be left in the lockbox at the bottom of the Town Hall stairs. Cash payments can be made
BY APPOINTMENT ONLY with the Tax Collector
(508-763-3871 Ext. 16)


Please be advised that tonight's Board of Selectmen meeting has been CANCELED


The Highway Department will be conducting Christmas tree pickups over the next week to two weeks. Please leave your tree outside by the road and the Highway Department will take care of the rest. If you have any questions, the Rochester Highway Department can be reached by calling 508-763-1991.


Town Hall/Annex New Year's Week hours are as follows:
Monday 8:30 AM - 6 PM
Tuesday 8:30 AM - 2 PM
Wednesday CLOSED
Thursday 8:30 AM -5 PM
Friday 8:30 AM -1PM


Tonight's Tree Lighting event will still take place at 6:30. The chorus and band portion will be held next door in the First Congregational Church's Fellowship Hall. Cookies and drinks will still be served following their performance in the Town Hall Conference Room. We hope to see everyone tonight!🎄🎅🍪🎤🎼


Please be advised that the Town Hall and Annex buildings will be opening at 10 AM today, December 3rd.


1 Constitution Way
Rochester, MA

Opening Hours

Tuesday 10am - 5pm
Wednesday 10am - 5pm
Thursday 1pm - 5pm
Friday 10am - 1pm


(508) 763-3871


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