Waste collection rate including $4 increase approved by aldermen

Published 11:21 pm Tuesday, May 8, 2018


NATCHEZ — Natchez residents will see a $4 increase on their waste collection bills starting in June, if a contract on the table is finalized today.

Aldermen approved collection rates for a three-year contract with Arrow Disposal Services — just two weeks before Waste Pro’s contract with the city ends — after spending Friday, Monday and Tuesday mornings editing the terms of the agreement.

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City Attorney Bob Latham said he met with Arrow representatives again Tuesday morning at 8 a.m. and debated facets of the contract until 10 a.m. Latham said he had hoped to have the contract finalized by the 11 a.m. aldermen meeting, but that he still had a few details he needed to nail down.

As it currently stands, Mayor Darryl Grennell said the overall cost for all waste and recycling services will be $17.45 per-house, per-month for residential customers. Trash pickup for city facilities is free under both the current contract with Waste Pro and the new contract with Arrow, Grennell said.

Under the previous contract, the waste collection rate was $13.74 per-month, per-house for garbage and recycling pickup, meaning residents will now pay approximately $4 more for the same services.

An additional dollar will be added to that rate year-round to account for mosquito spraying in the city. This charge is currently added to the city’s Waste Pro bill, raising the monthly charge to $14.74.

The $17.45 rate includes two services: garbage collection twice a week and recycling pick up once a week.

The waste pick up final bid was $13.45; recycling pick up is $4.

Grennell said trash rotations would continue as they currently are, with regular garbage pick up routes on Monday and Thursday and Tuesday and Friday.

Recycling pick up for the city will be on Wednesday.

Arrow will provide two bins for waste: One green 65-gallon bin for garbage and one blue 65-gallon bin for recycling.

The contract will secure Arrow as Natchez’s waste collector for the next three years starting June 1 with an option to renew for another three years in 2021.

Though she voted in favor of the contract, Ward 3 Alderwoman Sarah Smith said she hoped the city could one day move to once-a-week garbage pick up.

Smith said she favors once-a-week pickup because she believes with the 65-gallon recycling bins, many residents will reduce the amount of garbage that goes to the landfill. And, she said, a once-a-week contract is would cost the city and its residents less money.

“Down the road I hope we can go to once a week,” Smith said. “That’s something I really urge us to do.”

Ward 4 Alderwoman Felicia Bridgewater-Irving said though she agreed that eventually Natchez could work down to once-a-week pick up, she maintained her position in favor of twice-a-week collection for now.

“I do agree with you — over a time period, we can,” she said. “However, we need to educate our community.”

Bridgewater-Irving said currently residents are not accustomed to recycling, and they cannot be cut to once-a-week pick up so quickly.

The aldermen will hold a specially called meeting today to vote on the final version of Arrow’s contract.

No time for the meeting has been shared as of yet.

The rate and the details of the pick up will not change with the final edition of the contract, Latham said.

“We have a couple of things to work out,” Latham said.