It’s the cost
The two questions this newspaper has been asked the most after the city council’s long process of choosing a garbage collection service for Rockdale have been these:
• Why is the city switching from twice a week to once a week collection?
• Why isn’t at-the-curb recycling going to be included?
The answers are “it costs less” and “it costs less.”
When the council called for proposals on a new trash collection cycle it got literally dozens of options from three companies.
What it didn’t get was any proposal saying “we’ll keep picking up trash twice a week for the same price you’re paying now” or “we’ll add at-the-curb recycling for the same price you’re paying now.”
Currently, Rockdale residential customers pay $12.31 per month for twice-a-week delivery with Waste Management.
To continue that service Waste Management bid $15.41. That price would have probably gone up slightly as city administrative fees were added.
Trash collection companies are pushing hard for once a week. Not hard to figure out why. It costs a lot less to run trucks half as many days. All the once-a-week bids were less than twice a week.
All the companies also bid at-the-curb recycling which averaged about $5 per month per residential customer on top of the regular trash collection bid.
Bottom line. The city accepted the bid which resulted in the lowest cost for residential customers. IESI bid $12.98 and after city fees were added the final monthly cost on residential bills will be $13.51.
And recycling? IESI has pledged to have recycling available for customer who want to bring recyclable materials to rolloff containers. And the contract is structured so recycling could be added later at extra cost.—M.B.