New trash men to start in city Monday
NATCHEZ — City residents will see new faces and new trucks collecting their trash this week, and Waste Pro USA believes the transition will be smooth for residents.
Waste Pro Division Manager Doug Atkins said residents’ trash pick-up days will stay the same.
“If you’re trash is picked up on Monday and Thursday, it will stay that way,” he said. “If it’s picked up on Tuesday or Friday, it will stay that way.”
But pickup times could vary for the first three months, Atkins said, until Waste Pro crews can establish routine routes.
The times may change, he said, because Waste Pro will be running four trucks on route, while Waste Management, the former company, ran three.
City leaders awarded the trash collection contract to Waste Pro last week. The company will use Waste Management’s landfill until June, when the city’s waste disposal contract expires with Waste Management.
The trash will then be taken to Riverbend Environmental Services’ landfill in Jefferson County.
The city’s combined yearly cost for the contracts with Waste Pro USA and Riverbend is $785,250.
Riverbend co-owner Andrew Densing said the landfill is prepared to take the city’s trash now but must wait until the Waste Management contract expires.
One of the reasons Mayor Butch Brown said he voted for Riverbend is the potential for growth at the landfill.
Densing said the potential is definitely there and said the landfill collected 63,724 tons of waste in 2011, is on track to collect approximately 88,500 this year and projects to collect 180,000 in 2013.
For every new 26,000 tons of waste brought to the landfill, the city receives a $1 fee reduction, Densing said.
Densing said he does not see growth leveling off at the landfill for at least another five or six years for residential waste, and he said commercial waste could continue growing for 10 years.
Riverbend’s service area, Densing said, includes Vicksburg, Baton Rouge and Brookhaven among other locations. He said Riverbend also has just one landfill so it is not competing with itself, like other companies that have multiple landfills.
Densing said Riverbend plans to be a good community partner in Natchez, plans to set up a scholarship at Natchez High School and will provide free disposal for debris cleaned at dilapidated properties.
Atkins said Waste Pro also looks forward to being a positive part of the community.
The company, Atkins said, has hired four drivers, a supervisor and four helpers. The helpers, he said, were hired through a temp agency and will be eligible for permanent hire after three months.
Atkins said he has not hired any Waste Management employees, despite comments made by Brown during contract negotiations to the contrary.
Atkins previously worked for Waste Management, and he said he is not permitted to approach Waste Management employees to offer them jobs.
The most important thing Atkins said he would like to remind residents is to put their trash out for collection at 7 a.m. Atkins said residents putting their trash out by 7 will ensure it is picked up, because pickup times will vary until routine routes are established.