City residents get garbage fee increase, added services

Published 5:35 pm Monday, April 15, 2024

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NATCHEZ — The Natchez Board of Aldermen gave the City Clerk approval to finalize contract details with Arrow Disposal Service Inc. for the city’s garbage collection and disposal.

The new deal will cost each household in the city an additional $8.27 per month, bringing the monthly charge for garbage collection to $30.44 per month.

However, aldermen defended the increase in fees because of new services that will be available to residents, namely twice a month collection of “white goods,” which includes old appliances, furniture, and the like, as well as twice monthly collection of landscape debris.

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Arrow Disposal Services has been the city’s garbage collector for the last six years. Its contract ends in May.

Earlier in the year, the city began work to gather bids for a new garbage collection contract. Of the four bidders — Arrow, Waste Management, Waste Pro and Hometown Waste Services — Arrow’s bid was the least expensive.

A committee, headed up by City Clerk Meghan McKenzie with the help of Ward 2 Alderman Billie Joe Frazier, negotiated the improved services with Arrow.

Twice a week garbage collection and once a week recycling pickup will continue in the city, with the added twice a month pickup of the other material.

Frazier said the addition of the collection of white goods in the garbage contract will ultimately save taxpayers money because it will cut down on the number of illegal dump sites the city must pay to clean up now.

“This contract was done fairly,” he said. “People now will not have to throw away their refrigerators and stoves and limbs illegally.”

He said some citizens will not like paying the increase, “but here’s the thing: we had to do what is best for the city in spending the city money. This contract was the best one for us.”

Frazier thanked McKenzie for her hard work on the contract.

Ward 6 Alderman Curtis Moroney urged the city and Arrow to do a thorough job of getting information about the new services to citizens, once a schedule for picking up white goods and landscape debris is in place.

Sending out a mailer was discussed, as well as putting a notice in residents’ water bills.

Natchez Mayor Dan Gibson said he was pleased that the city would continue using the local landfill in Adams County, which is owned by Waste Management, for the disposal of garbage.

Ward 3 Alderwoman Sarah Carter Smith reminded residents to make use of the city’s recycling program. She said residents pay per ton for any garbage that goes into the landfill.

“Recycling cuts down on what we have to pay to dispose of in the landfill,” she said.