Waste Connections seeks to retain trash collection
by By DAVID DAVIS Managing Editor
Jan 13, 2013 | 791 views | 0 0 comments | 5 5 recommendations | email to a friend | print

Waste Connections took its campaign to the public by taking out full-page newspaper ads and distributing flyers asking them to show up Monday at the 1 p.m. work session of the Cleveland City Council.

The trash hauler has embarked on an aggressive marketing campaign to convince Council members to extend the waste contract with the city.

Since December, Waste Connections has advertised in the newspaper and left flyers with its customers asking them to please help the city save $35,000 per year and $210,000 over the next six years.

“We have asked the City Council of Cleveland for a five-year extension of our contract, Which will bring this savings to you,” the flyers state.

The flier urges residents to call their respective City Council member and lists each of their phone numbers.

Cleveland-based Santek Waste Services Vice President for Marketing Cheryl Dunson said Wednesday it is apparent Waste Connections is working very hard and spending a lot of money to convince the city of Cleveland to extend its contract and not solicit bids on the city’s garbage service.

“Santek is seeking an opportunity to participate in a procurement process and has guaranteed to the city in writing it can meet or beat Waste Connections’ pricing,” she said.

At-Large Councilman Richard Banks said Saturday morning he has received about 50 calls.

He said most people were happy with their trash service on one hand, but on the other, they believe the contract should be let for bid.

Waste Connections Municipal Marketing Manager Doug McGill offered in November to forego a price increase in 2013, if the city exercised the option to extend the contract five years. The cost the company charges is tied to the Consumer Price Index published annually.

The Council seemed poised to extend the contract at its Dec. 8 meeting until Dunson said the city is selling itself short if the contract is not let for bid.

“We want an opportunity to bid on it and based on a letter we’ve sent to city leaders and hand-delivered to them, this contract should be bid because of its size and magnitude,” Dunson said during an interview in December.

“We are guaranteeing that what residents are currently paying under the current scope of work, we can meet or beat that price.”

The CPI adjustment is 2.49 percent. According to McGill, not taking the adjustment equates to a $35,000 savings to the city this year, the final year of the contract.

“If you compound that by six years, the last year of the contract and the five years of the extension, this would give the city an approximate savings of $210,000,” he said.

“This is a cumulative savings to the city no matter what happens. We would look to get the CPI adjustment at the first year of the extension.”

McGill said the city of Cleveland has the best rate in the market area.

“At $6.77 (per month), you have the best rate of anybody in the market area, I promise you do,” he said.