Norwalk council debating need for sanitation requests

Department requests new garbage truck, front-end loader and vacuum for leaf pickup, all totalling $350,000.
Scott Seitz2
Dec 16, 2013

Norwalk city council members are taking a close look at three pieces of equipment requested by the sanitation department in the 2014 budget.

The items are a new garbage truck, front-end loader and vacuum for leaf pickup.

The garbage truck costs $200,000, while the leaf machine comes with a $40,000 price tag and the front-end loader has a cost of $110,000.

"This is not an issue of funding, but an issue of need," Councilman Bob Carleton said Wednesday, referring to the sanitation fund.

A story about this issue was published recently in the Norwalk Reflector. So you don't miss stories such as this one, you can subscribe to the Norwalk Reflector to receive home delivery and/or the e-paper, which is a complete digital replica of each issue. For more information, call (419) 668-3771 or click HERE.

 

Comments

2sense

Truck yeah leaf blower yeah loader that may get used a little bit of the time no

asphaltcowboy86

If they can approve a $900000.00 fire truck they should not think twice about this.

Contango

Austerity is the growing watchword.

Privatize as many city services such as sanitation as possible.

DaMob

I agree. Many people think their trash pick up is a free city service. 1/4 percent of our income tax goes directly to sanitation. That leaves 1 1/4 % income tax for the rest of the city. If trash was privatized, Norwalk would have 1 1/2% and would be in much better shape. I know they cant just do it, it has to go to a vote. Most cities have 1 1/2 to 1 3/4% income tax without trash pick up. I don't know of any other city in Ohio that picks up trash.

Jackwagon

If you privatize it, the city still has to pay the private company to pick up the trash. That 1/4% will still go to paying allied waste to come in and pick up the trash. That money doesn't just free up because it's privatized.

oceanspray

If you would privatize it would solve a lot... First off would be close up the T/S....Everything that hits the floor down there goes to erie county...kinda silly??? all this double work seems crazy...if you privatize all the city residents would receive bills quarterly...lets think about this!!! this all started because mayor frey wanted his own city p/u...

Now The Rest of...

Even with the 1/4 income tax, keep the sanitation service as is, my $46 billing a month that pays for water, sewer and trash is much less than I paid in two other neighboring communities. Compare our costs to Milan, Huron, Perkins and Sandusky, not to mention Northern Ohio Rural Water rates that don't include sewer or trash.

Contango

Re: "less than I paid in two other neighboring communities."

TANSTAAFL - There Ain't No Such Thing As A Free Lunch.

Add in lifetime perqs like health and welfare benefits that taxpayers are on the hook with public ees. to future and 'hidden' costs, i.g. Detroit, et al.

Also, most city employees have taken pay freezes. They can't and won't do that forever.

Finally, privatization allows for the potential of improved fiscal planning and lessens the possibility of political collusion.

IMO, the option should 'at least' be explored.

JUSTHOWITIS

I agree they should look into a private hualer for sanitation. Look at what Mayor Bell did when he was in office for the city of Toledo and going to Republic Services for their trash hauling. He made money for the city by doing this and saved all the "hidden cost and benefits". This is a great suggestion Contango!

Now The Rest of...

Even with the "hidden costs" our costs are still less than all most every other area community. If Republic was so great why did the Lorain County Communities not renew their contract for 2014? Isn't Bell who collects a state pension from being a retired fireman benefits from these "hidden costs" is soon to be ex-mayor of Toledo, maybe his idea wasn't that great.

DaMob

It should be looked into. You can't tell me 4 garbage trucks that go by my house once a week is cheaper. Trash, paper recyclables, other recyclables and twigs/grass all yr except winter. Convenient? Yes. Economical? No.

Contango

Re: "hidden costs"

i.e. potential projected unfunded liabilities.

Norwalk used to have a municipal power plant too. Economies of scale and ever increasing maintenance costs eventually made it financially prohibitive.

Other than Norwalk, no municipality I ever lived in had public trash collection.

Not too worry, privatization will never happen and an ever increasingly poor bedroom community will just be on the hook for more retiree public ee. health and welfare benefits.

JUSTHOWITIS

Did they still not all go with a private company "now the rest of"?
So yes it must be a good idea! I dont think they all went out and got the CITY to do it! NOw did they?

JUSTHOWITIS

Plus you wanna talk about "double dipping" take a look at Ms. Goodsite!
So as she did he earned that retirement thru the fire department as she did teaching. If you had any idea of the real cost saving you wouldn't even be disputing the statement. But let me guess ex-city employee, Think they will be out jobs? No not the case either their employees were moved to diffrent departments in the city or could also go work with the new hauler. (whoever it may be)

Now The Rest of...

Wow public sector envy, what didn't test high enough for a government employment, really seems to have your panties in a bunch.

rbenn

You are always saying folks are stupid or envious, people are making good points and all you can do is attack them. Privatization is the best route to go with solid waste. I know this cause I manage solid waste before you attack me. Most if not all will be absorbed into the new company coming in, then the rest will be sent to other departments. That's fact. The cost of hauling and disposing of waste is getting more and more expensive every year, as well as permit payments ect ect. You also have the maintenance of trucks tipping fee increases, pay increases, state fees, and the list goes on and on. Why do you think most cities don't pick up their own waste anymore? Its too expensive.

Now The Rest of...

I agree the cost of solid waste disposal is increasing, but that applies for any hauler public or private. Explain how Norwalk continues to have lower rates than most other area communities for combined water, sewer and trash, all of them who use private haulers for garbage.

rbenn

Actually tipping rates here are higher than the state average. and on the upper end of national average. These costs will keep climbing. The big waste haulers can absorb the costs better than a municipality. Also with the counties flow control you are legally extorted to use the transfer station "which should be sold off" but that's another story. The big haulers have better negotiation power so in the long run its financially more feasible

earlduck

I don't know how long the garbage haulers day is nor do i know about their retirement plan,but everytime i see them they are working hard,so if it is anywhere near cost effective keep them on the job,one thing i wouldn't want to do is throw more Norwalk people out of a job.
that is of course jobs that are absolutely necessary like garbage pick up

earlduck

also theres an excellent chance that I have no idea as to what I'm talking about on this subject.
I just know I like the service I have now

rbenn

Don't get me wrong the city does a good job, but the cost will become to great in years to come. Sad thing is Norwalks trash is sent 10 miles south to travel back 15 miles north. Don't make much sense huh.But because of flow control we just cant take it directly to the landfill.

Now The Rest of...

I agree with some of your points but I also have seen the big haulers increase their rates not only for increased tipping rates but to pay for increases in wages many times higher than in the similar public sector jobs, Republic being one example. The private haulers are for profit, the city is in it for service. With lower rates than many area communities, dependable and efficient service by the city employees why fix something that's not broke?

rbenn

there is good and bad on both sides, but as time goes on privatization is the best way to go. unfortunately with the feds being more tough on regulations the cost is gonna keep going up its a fact we all have to live with. Just for me to manage landfills I have to go to many licencing classes which get very expensive. The hauling part is a small factor in the waste industry, landfills are getting more and more expensive to build since the implementation of subtitles c and d. Engineering costs just to run one can go into the hundreds of thousands of dollars a year, as well as post closer costs in the millions that by law the operator has to have in an account. These costs will keep rising and passed on to us. The big companies have the power to keep prices lower unlike municipalities that just dont have the bargaining power. You do raise good points though.

Snoozer

In my opinion, We need to keep trash pickup city operated. Its in place and should stay that way! What happens when cost go up and we are at the mercy of the outsourced contractors? At least now we have the equipment and staff in place to operate.
Also we are saving local jobs and that contributes to the Local economy.
But my biggest concern about privatized trash pickup is this: what happens when your neighbor loses their job and can"t afford this service? will they burn there trash in the city? will they drop it off in the country? how many rats and roedents will be drawn into the the city for those who cant afford this service?
This issue should be looked at from all angels! just might cost more money down the road than trying to save a quick buck today...

Contango

Re: "what happens when your neighbor loses their job and can"t afford this service?"

A rhetorical question since "your neighbor" wouldn't be financially supporting either a private or public sanitation service.

The "let govt. do it" mentality has a financial end which stops at one's billfold.

Final point: As written before, public ee. pensions are in TROUBLE & the sanitation dept is the tip of the iceberg.

http://billmoyers.com/2013/12/12...

You might wanna ask city hall how solvent is the city's funding of public ee. pensions.

Dr. Information

Have to agree with Contango here. Privatization allows for competition. The notion that privatization will cause trash around the town because people won't be able to afford it is hideous. Look around, Norwalk is one of the few that do this. Those that cannot afford it get it "FREE" anyhow.