The WSWMD was formed in 1988. At that time, only eight towns were members of the District. These towns cooperatively managed a 30 acre landfill.
In 1995, federally mandated landfill operation regulations forced WSWMD to seek alternative landfill sites or an alternative to landfill disposal. After much debate, WSWMD opted to get out of the landfill business and start recycling.
Today, WSWMD has in place the elements of a cooperative, progressive and responsible integrated solid waste management system. The solid waste management hierarchy is fully represented in the District's program - source reduction, recycling, waste combustion, then landfilling.
The District's headquarters are based in Brattleboro, Vermont where the District maintains
a 30 acre closed landfill;
a 40 tons per day Materials Recovery Facility (MRF);
a transfer station;
a drop-off facility ("convenience center") for waste oil, tires, batteries, textiles, white goods, metals and yard waste;
a Swap Shop for reusable items;
District offices that house the administrative staff and the operations staff; and,
drop-off recycling depots in each member community.