Posts Tagged ‘trash removal’

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Amid legal strife, Oakland will return garbage contract to Waste Management

September 29th, 2014

84905_1280x720In a surprising turn of events, The City of Oakland has decided to bow out of the legal battle brought on by Waste Management and give back the contract that will keep the company in control of a majority of the waste collection services.

While the council’s unanimous vote allows California Waste Solutions (CWS) to still be in charge for collecting recyclables, garbage and compost collection duties will be the responsibility of Waste Management. This means that the hundred plus year relationship between Waste management and Oakland will continue.

Some city officials are meeting the decision with a sigh of relief. Under the previous contract, CWS would have had to drastically expand their operations in the city in a very short amount of time. This would include building new facilitates, acquiring 150 new trucks, and 300,000 new trash bins. Some officials whose advice fell on deaf ears suggested that the small East Bay company could not meet the lofty challenge.

On the other hand, a faction of officials who help get the contract in the hands of CWS in the first place are less than enthused. Councilwoman Desley Brooks offered her take on the situation, saying, “We have set a precedent here tonight that when people don’t get their way and they have enough money, they just do whatever they want to, say whatever they want to and there are no ramifications for what they do”.

As part of the new deal, Waste Management has agreed to drop the lawsuit, end the petition drive they started, and reimburse the city around $800,000 to cover their Oakland’s court costs.

(Source: http://www.sfgate.com/bayarea/article/Oakland-OKs-waste-contract-compromise-5774321.php)

Oakland Gambles with New Trash Hauling Contract

August 6th, 2014

cwslogo_tagline

For the first time in years, the city of Oakland will be counting on a different company to handle garbage pickup.

Last week, city council unanimously voted to award the highly coveted 10-year contract (valued at $1 billion) to California Waste Solutions (CWS), an Oakland-based company whose primary expertise lies in recycling. The decision to place garbage-collecting responsibilities for the entire city in the hands of a company with no experience with garbage represents an extremely risky venture.

With CWS taking over garbage collection duties, it marks the end a decades-long business relationship between the city and Waste Management, the agency previously handling garbage pickup. At times in the past the relationship has been strained, many pointing the Waste Managements decision to lock out 500 members of the Teamsters labor union after workers refused the companies demand that they pay a larger share of their healthcare benefits as a major factor. As a result, trash was left uncollected for two weeks and city officials were not too happy. (Source)

The major turning point during negotiations came when Waste Management refused to budge off the proposed $100 a year rate increase. CWS offered a more competitive bid, with a figure that would only cost residents around $80 more per year. With the winning bid comes the daunting task of CWS expanding their current operations to meet its new needs. In less then a year, CWS must:

  • Build a transfer station in Oakland
  • Add 150+ employees
  • Double its 70-truck fleet
  • Invest around $80 million into operations
  • Swap out 300,000 trash bins

Should CWS fall short during preparations, they have prepared to let Republic Services, the second largest garbage service in the US, will allow them to use their transfer station in Richmond.

(Source: http://www.sfgate.com/bayarea/johnson/article/Oakland-s-plan-to-hire-local-trash-hauler-could-5667987.php#photo-6389119)

Garbage Collection Fees Going Up in Berkeley

April 21st, 2014

SideLoader-Truck-with-Extended-Arm-004The money is not there in waste collection. That’s what the city of Berkeley has come to realize, as it moves to offset its loss (or projected loss) of nearly $3 million in waste pickup services, by increasing garbage collection rates by 25% coming into effect July 2014. In addition to this, Berkeley residents will notice some new language on their bills; “Zero Waste Services” will replace “Refuse”. According to city officials, they simply weren’t charging enough to cover the associated recycling and compost pickup costs.

In a recent meeting of the City Council of Berkeley, members were given two choices: either increase fees by 24.7%, or, phase in a 35.5 percent increase over three years. City Council members voted to for the former approach. How will this breakdown? Those on the bottom of the food chain (residents using the smallest bins) will see a $3 increase, those with 20-gallon bins, $5, and those using 32-gallon bins will see a $7 increase service.

In addition to mitigating the deficit, funds raised by these increases will help rebuild and improve the transfer station, Materials Recovery Facility, and support recycling outreach and education campaigns.  Notices are scheduled to go out to residents on March 28 and a public hearing is scheduled on May 20.  City spokesman Matthai Chakko wanted to assure residents that Berkeley’s pickup fees are still in line with the average rates of nearby cities. To offset these kinds of cuts in the future, the city is considering cutting back some pickup services, a move that has worked for other cities.

Junk Hauler’s Rates Remain Competitive

While the City of Berkeley is planning to increase rates, companies like Fast Haul are making their business more competitive, to pick up the slack. Fast Haul’s truck are 15 to 30% larger than their large franchise competition – the old adage of being lean and mean, fits them well. This bodes well, as it lets them keep prices down while taking on more projects and servicing a wider area. This follows good business, as more and more cities in the Bay Area clamp down on the objects that can be collected, recycled, and/or diverted into landfill, in the surge to reach the Zero Waste frontier. See Fast Haul’s rates.

Source: http://blogs.kqed.org/newsfix/2014/02/28/berkeley-to-increase-garbage-collection-fees-by-25-february-27-2014-230-pm-by-emilie-raguso/

By: Ethan Malone

Mill Valley Women Start Trash Removal Program

October 3rd, 2013

nmij0907highwaysTwo Mill Valley residents, Jill Whitebook and Vicky Dehnert, took on the initiative to run a trash removal program after seeing for years litter piling up along Strawberry frontage road right by Highway 101 and wanted to put a stop to it. The non-profit Marin Clean Highway was founded in 2011 and is managed by volunteers who actively raises money needed to pay junk hauling and trash removal contractors to clean up the roads on both side of Highway 101 from Seminary Drive to the Tiburon Boulevard/East Blithedale exit.

Marin County has no budget for litter removal but Whitebook and Dehnert continued to beleaguer their county supervisor in granting them $5,000 to embark in their trash removal campaign. With the grant, they were able to hire hauling and trash removal contractors to clean up the road three times at a cost of $250 each. Whitebook and Dehnert are now trying to raise $20,000 to continue the cleanup maintenance for the next two years.

With the growing accomplishment they have made thus far, Whitebook and Dehnert hope to find a long-term sustainable solution for the road cleanup, more volunteers to perform fundraising and administrative tasks and more contributions.

Like Jill Whitebook and Vicky Dehnert, David Singer started his own junk removal and trash cleanup company due to the high demand for a cleaner environment in his city of Oakland. Through hard work and persistence, Fast Haul has expanded to serve various cities including Mill Valley and all of the Marin County.

Source: http://www.marinij.com/marinnews/ci_24092674/mill-valley-women-start-litter-removal-program-seek

By: Ethan Malone

A Zero-Waste City: SF’s Ambitious Goal

February 25th, 2013

Trash, recycling and compostable material bins sit in front of homes in San Francisco in this file photo. (Photo: Justin Sullivan, Getty Images)

In a recent article on USAToday.com by Michelle Lodge, a joint effort between the city of San Francisco and the city’s primary waste management company, Recology, was highlighted. The goal of this joint effort is to make San Francisco a zero-waste city in just seven year’s time. By “zero-waste” this ambitious plan literally is seeking to have 100% of garbage waste diverted to various recycling or composting efforts rather than going to the landfill.  Here is a brief excerpt from the article:

If they’re successful, all of San Franciscans’ discarded items will be recycled, reused or composted, and its need for landfills will become obsolete.

As a result, what might look like a stinky pile of trash to the average person is quite another matter to a “garbage man” like Michael J. Sangiacomo, president and CEO of Recology, an employee-owned and operated company that has held a solid-waste-management contract with San Francisco for many years. Read more @ USATODAY.com

For larger items such as old appliances or out-dated electronics (that may contain hazardous materials), it can be especially complicated for consumers to assess where to dump those types of items.  In these cases, we at Fast Haul like to present ourselves as a convenient, and a green solution, that is aligned with the goals of programs such as the one described by this USA Today article.  As a true green business, Fast Haul offers a 10% recycle discount for loads containing 25% minimum of recyclable materials such as metal, paper, cardboard, green waste, etc. You can read more about this on our Green Hauling page.

 
 
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