City employees began passing out plastic containers to residents this week for a recycling program expected to begin by Aug. 1.
Residents in the city's 11,000 houses are being given red 14-gallon containers for newspapers and blue 18-gallon containers for bottles and cans. City workers are also handing out "yard waste" stickers for people to affix on containers of grass and trimmings.
Under the program, residents will put out the sorted recyclables on their regular trash-pickup day.
The program will be funded by a recently approved increase in local garbage fees from $10.61 to $12.63 a month. The fees will pay for the $330,000 recycling program and for higher rates for dumping trash in landfills.
The trash will be picked up by Athens Disposal Co., which has provided curb-side garbage removal for Montebello since 1962.
The recycling program was mandated by state law, which designates recycling as a method for cities to reduce trash rates 25% from 1990 to 1995.