If It Ain’t Broke … City is about to change garbage pickup
If it ain’t broke, don’t try to fix it!
We are talking trash pickup here. First, I want to complement everyone involved in the current system of trash collection. It works very well and all employees are efficient and professional. I appreciate them. To consider any major changes to this service is misguided.
What is being considered is eliminating one day a week of trash pickup, requiring all residents to use big plastic trash receptacles in front of their houses. Trash would still have to be placed in plastic bags, but the city would stop furnishing garbage bags. The city would give the resident one plastic trash container, but the resident would have to buy additional cans if one is not enough to hold a week’s garbage. If it is stolen or damaged the resident would have to replace it at his own expense. The cans would have to be wheeled out to a specific location so the truck could automatically pick them up on trash day. The city is considering picking up from only one side of the street. That means half the people would have to wheel their cans across the street and leave them at their neighbors’ house. If you are on the side of the street that gets the pickup, you would have to tolerate your neighbors’ trash cans until they come and get them or the wind blows them away. No racks to hold the trash receptacles in place would be furnished. Elderly people will have a hard time wheeling the 90 gallon containers around – they would be about three times the size of the normal trash can that you see sometimes around town.
The city is, in essence, considering changing a system that works well and reducing the services to one-third the present level with no reduction in fees. That is the equivalent of a 300% increase in cost to the customer. If the fee is reduced in keeping with the “savings” to the city, it would result in a $5.00 reduction per month in the average customer’s bill.
By the city’s figures, the change would save them about $600,000 per year. None of that savings would be passed on to the customers. It would be wasted by the city on other things.
The trash cans would be an unsightly mess along our streets all day long. The current bags disappear when picked up by the crew. The cans will remain to be blown around the neighborhood all day. I have been to towns that use this system and a lot of houses have two of these big cans in front of or beside the house – ugh! Atttached are some photos of what we might expect our neighborhoods to look like with this system.
The council is considering hiring Toter, Inc. to do a pilot trial in certain areas of the city. What are the chances that the trial runs will be made in any of the neighborhoods where the mayor, council members or city staff live? (Maybe their trial run will give us a chance to take photos of the real blight.)
I can see where some well-intended bureaucrat thought this would be a good way to increase city coffers by $600,000 a year. In typical bureaucrat logic he/she never considered that this is actually fraud against the city’s customers.
We do not need to be spending taxpayer money to conduct a study on a system that is functioning well. The city council is going to consider this matter at their meeting Tuesday night at 7 p.m. at City Hall. They need to be encouraged to vote against this expense and to drop consideration of any major change to our trash collection system.
See attachment for photos of what will probably be in store if the city implements this change.
cc: Justin Hewlett, Mayor, firstname.lastname@example.org
John Warren,, SMD4, Mayor ProTem, email@example.com
Bob Kelly, SMD1, firstname.lastname@example.org
Gayle White, SMD2, email@example.com
Dale Sturgeon, SMD3, firstname.lastname@example.org
Rick Holden, City Manager, email@example.com