Trash still on minds of elected officials

Published 12:03 am Wednesday, October 31, 2012

NATCHEZ — They accepted waste pickup proposals together, but for the moment Adams County’s two governments are mulling over the possibilities separately.

The Adams County Board of Supervisors and the Natchez Board of Aldermen advertised jointly for waste pickup disposals earlier this year in an attempt to gain more bargaining leverage.

In the proposals, which were opened in the supervisors’ boardroom last Tuesday, the companies that submitted plans for consideration gave three numbers — for trash pickup in the City of Natchez alone, for pickup in the parts of Adams County outside the city limits alone and for whole-county pickup.

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Grennell said the supervisors were waiting for city officials to evaluate the proposals and inform the county of their position on the proposals.

“We have to wait on them because I am not sure if the city is looking at the combination numbers or at the city-alone numbers,” Grennell said.

“We were hoping that if we did a combined bid, the numbers would come in significantly lower, which would create a savings for the city and the county. It is the Sam Walton concept — buying in bulk gives you a cheaper price.”

The proposals for twice weekly pickup were made on a per-house-per-month rate. The proposals also included a recycling pickup option, and though the presented pickup plans were complex and dozens of pages long, the apparent highest proposal came from Red River Service Corporation.

Red River’s proposal was $13.60 per house for county collection outside the city limits, $10.24 for collection within the city and $9.99 for combined collection.

The apparent low proposal for county outside the city limits only collection was WastePro, which proposed $9.25 per house. The apparent low proposal for city collection came from Waste Management at $7.52 a house.

The apparent low proposal for combined pickup came from Waste Management for $8.46 per house.

The supervisors are waiting to act in deference to the city because the city’s waste pickup contract expires in the next month, while the county’s contract has several more months left on it, Grennell said.

Natchez Mayor Butch Brown said the aldermen had a work session Monday to discuss the proposals.

“We are digesting those proposals, and once we whittle that down to a short list down of two, we will then bring two (companies) in and chat with them make sure we understand their numbers and options and alternate (plans),” Brown said. “From there we will make a selection and then negotiate.”

Because the proposals received were not bids, they can be negotiated, Brown said.

The mayor said the aldermen seemed generally happy with the proposals they received, but Grennell said he felt the combined pickup numbers weren’t what he expected.

“I thought the city-county numbers would have come in much lower than they did,” he said.

Both Brown and Grennell said the respective boards were looking to get the best deal for the taxpayers.

Companies that submitted proposals included Red River Service Corporation, RES, WastePro and Waste Management.