Who will take out the trash?
June 16, 2007
Main Street business owners have an important decision to make: Who’s going to take out the trash?
"There are a lot of things that are up in the air," said Ken Davis, head of the Main Street Business Alliance.
As of July 1, the contract with Summit County expires and Allied Waste Services will no longer pick up trash from businesses. That means Main Street business owners have been scrambling to hire their own garbage haulers, which may create some disparity among businesses as they might be forced to work out different contracts.
"You could have two businesses side by side paying different rates. It becomes more costly for one and cheaper for the other," said said Jerry Gibbs, Park City public works director.
To avoid that problem, the Main Street merchants are trying to pull together a unified contract. Davis said they are also trying to establish a recycling program.
"The city wants some consistency in how the fees are assessed," Gibbs said. "They are trying to get a standard rate for each container based on volume and weight."
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Davis said one contract for all the businesses would reduce traffic and simplify things.
"We thought it was best to continue in the same lines and have one vendor do the all the trash instead of having myriad of trucks come into town," Davis said. "We felt there was not other choice."
The Main Street Business Alliance is currently sifting through vendors.
"We are sending out competitive quotes for the Main Street area," Davis said. "It would be standardized for various different services. Thereafter, we are going to move forward."
Davis said it’s all not going to happen before the deadline.
"So we will be working with Allied Waste on a temporary basis to fill the gap," he said.
Gibbs also wants to simplify the service so there’s only one contractor.
"We are supportive to consolidate trash services so it’s under one contractor as opposed to multiple contractors," Gibbs said. "The county contracts are over July 1 and are open to any licensed trash hauler."
If a bid is accepted and a new contract is formed, Park City will be responsible for the trash instead of the county as it is presently, Gibbs said.
"Every business was falling under the master contract the county had," Davis said.
"The board that is over the (the trash) will be appointed by the Park City Council and they will have to abide follow all city regulations policies and procedures," Gibbs added. "There will be a board appointed over the bid in an advisory capacity."
Chuck Saccio, the owner of Hungry Moose Pub and Grill, is cautious about the change.
"Everything’s been fine," Saccio said. "They are keeping it clean and tidy, I don’t know if that’s going to continue with the city. If there’s changes made where we have to police it or maintain it, then it will collapse. We’re too busy to put people in charge of it."
Although Saccio said he wasn’t aware of every detail regarding the issue, he could see how the current way could be a conflict among businesses. But then again, he said some businesses use the trash more than others.
"It’s going to have to happen all together, as a group," Saccio said. "It’s one trash can, just a very big trash can. But I thought everything was fine."
But at this time, nothing is set in stone.
"We are pending signatures and pending council approval, hearings. There’s a bunch of hurdles to have to overcome," Davis said. "Once that’s done, we’ll be taking the steps to have the solid waste problem, hopefully, taken care of in the town."
The Main Street Merchants might have to absorb any additional costs such as a tipping fee for the landfill when the change occurs. At this time, he’s not sure what the extra cost may be.
"We are not sure exactly where we are going to end up," Davis said. "But we know it’s going up and we are looking to mitigate the increase as much as we can."