Corsicana Daily Sun, Corsicana, Texas

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May 12, 2014

Last-minute offer tips scales for trash deal

Corsicana — The Corsicana City Council approved raising trash collection rates when the group met in regular session Monday evening.

The contract with Allied Waste expires in October, and the city has been negotiating a renewal with the company for awhile now, but by Monday they were at an impasse.

Allied officials stated that they couldn’t bring as much trash to the city’s landfill as in the past, because it’s cheaper to take to their own landfills. But that money helps pay for the city’s brush and bulk trash collection, and for the clean-ups the city does around town when people dump illegally in creeks and sides of the road. The sanitation department also pays money into the general fund to help rebuild streets damaged by the trash trucks.

Allied was contracted to bring in 244,000 yards of trash per month, but they wanted to only bring in 155,000. The difference would cost the city about $138,000 a year in landfill income.

During the council’s work session, Allied General Manager Kevin Flanagan offered to make a phone call to his bosses to see if anything further could be done, and he returned with a counter-offer of 165,000 yards.

That seemed to make a difference for the council, because less than 15 minutes later they voted unanimously to renew the contract and raise the trash collection rates.

Under the new deal, residents will have their rates increased by $1.50 a month, commercial collections will go up 10 percent, there will be an increase in gate fees at the landfill, and there will be changes in how much brush the city will collect without charging a higher rate.

Currently, residents can leave out 10 cubic yards of limbs and the city will collect it. Under the new system, the maximum will be five yards. If people leave out more than five cubic yards, they’ll be charged $16 per yard.

Even with the increases in fees, and the additional amount brought to the landfill, the city will still lose about $78,000 in revenue, said City Manager Connie Standridge. That money will mean less funding for street repairs, Standridge said.

The city’s residents haven’t had a garbage rate increase for the last five years, Standridge pointed out.

Flanagan said they were glad they could renew the contract with the city. It will be good for another five years.

“Nobody likes an increase, but it warrants an increase for the services we receive,” said Ruby Williams, precinct 2.

Don Denbow, precinct 3, had said in the work session that he didn’t see how they could justify the rate increase without seeing other options, or at least going out for bids.

However, after Allied’s counter-proposal, he said it wasn’t worth the possible risk of getting a worse deal if they delayed for bids.

In other business, the council took the following actions:

• Awarded the contract to replace a 2-inch line on East Collin with a 6-inch line to Capps-Capco Construction for $232,222. The city got a $275,000 grant for the project from the state. The grant will pay for all of the work, plus the engineering.

• Voted to deny a rate increase to Atmos Energy.

• Approved a Historical Appraised Tax Value exemption for 900 N. 37th St.

• Awarded a contract for crack and seal work to Mike Benton Enterprises. The company was the only one to bid on the work, but they came in at a lower price than the previous year.

• Swore in for two more years, Precinct 1 Councilman Tom Wilson and Precinct 2 Council woman Ruby Williams. Neither was opposed in the city elections.

 

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