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July 10, 2013

Council approves garbage contract

GREENVILLE — The Greenville City Council voted Tuesday to approve a new contract for garbage collection in the city.

The Council agreed to award the contract, which includes a slight rate increase, to Progressive Waste Solutions of Texas, formerly Independent Environmental Services Incorporated/IESI.

Interim City Manager/Director of Public Works Massoud Ebrahim told the Council that Greenville had been contracting with IESI since 1999 and that the existing contract expired on June 30.

Ebrahim explained the city contracts separately for collection and for disposal at the landfill, with the landfill contract due to expire in October 2018. 

Ebrahim said he met with a Council committee comprised of Velma Del Bosque-Hobdy, Renee Francey and Sandra Linson Bell, which recommended a new five-year contract for collection with Progressive, after which the city might investigate going out for a combined contract.

The new contract with Progressive Waste Solutions includes the continued twice weekly residential garbage pickup and continued with commercial garbage pickup services, along with amendments to the existing contract to provide improved services.

The changes include a three percent rate increase, a reduced fuel surcharge, additional service for the Wastewater Reclamation Center, and new age and weight limits for the trucks which operate as part of the local fleet.

Council member Dan Perkins said that the company had done an excellent job, but wondered why the contract had not gone out for bid. He also asked whether once-a-week trash collection and expanded recycling had been considered.

Francey said she had spoken with about a dozen local residents about once-a-week collections.

“There were more people that did not want that,” Francey said.

Ebrahim also recommended against once-a-week collections, given summers in Texas.

“Inside the toter, the temperature would go up to like 200 degrees,” he said.

Francey said Ebrahim had investigated the rates and services in multiple area cities served by Progressive and other companies and was able to negotiate a good deal.

“The bottom line is, he had the numbers to look at,” Francey said. “He was pushing hard.”

Dick Demien with Progressive Waste Solutions noted the company provides Greenville residents with roll-offs from dilapidated houses, citywide clean-up events four times a year and curbside tire collections.

“The City of Greenville gets far more services for its dollars than other cities do,” Demien said.

The contract will be effective starting with the new fiscal year on October 1 and continue through Sept. 30, 2018.

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