What rough beast slouches toward Chico to take the garbage contract?

4 Sep

About two weeks ago I was puttering around in my yard, just happened to be wondering what was going on with the city’s garbage deal, when I noticed the Waste Management truck coming along the street. So, I flagged him down and asked him if he’d heard anything.

Yes, he said, he’s heard,  Waste Management will get all the accounts east of the freeway. But he also reported that the city is not moving very fast, so Waste Management is short of staff because they don’t know what’s going to happen. He said that’s why they aren’t picking up unused cans right now.

A neighbor of ours moved out almost a month ago, the new neighbor has moved in and ordered Recology, and there sit three empty Waste Management cans, just out on the street, nobody will take responsibility for them. On a regular basis I see a man who walks his dog down our street dump a bag of poop in them, as if they’re just sitting there for the convenience of passersby. When trash pick-up days come around they are out there to add confusion and take parking space. 

I know there’s an arm-wrestling match going on over this deal – and we’re the prize! The paying customer, including all those people who will be forced to get service whether they need it or not. I’ve asked about customers who share service, many of my neighbors do, because they don’t generate enough trash in their one-to-two-people household to justify a gi-normous truck grinding to a stop in front of their house every week. But Orme keeps giving me the same stone face the haulers are getting – they don’t have a deal yet, and he ain’t talking.

I’ve also asked City Manager Mark Orme, what about low-income customers? PG&E and Cal Water both have subsidy programs, paid for by all their other customers. Orme will not discuss that provision either, he won’t even tell me whether they will require service or not. The consultant they hired said they had to require service to make this deal feasible for the hauler. 

Orme is being too tight lipped. He acts like this deal is none of the public’s business. There’s an Internal Affairs meeting next Wednesday, 8am – you know I love the 8am meetings! The garbage deal is not on the agenda but I can ask about it. 

I wish some of you would bop on in. 

2 Responses to “What rough beast slouches toward Chico to take the garbage contract?”

  1. Jim September 4, 2015 at 8:27 am #

    This stinks. We should be able to choose the service we want, or no service if we don’t want. I live alone and don’t generate a lot of trash, I fill the small can only about a 1/3 full each week.

    • Juanita Sumner September 5, 2015 at 11:56 am #

      I so agree.

      I think it’s time to write to city management about our concerns. I will drop a note to mark.sorensen@chicoca.gov, as well as mark.orme@chicoca.gov I hope they’re already hearing from people who are familiar with the problems the county had with their deal. A big issue is private driveways, and that’s still not being addressed at the county level.

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