Waste Pro wants to consolidate pickup to 1 day in Beaufort

emoody@beaufortgazette.comDecember 3, 2013 

Beaufort residents might make fewer trips to the curb to get their trash hauled away next year.

Waste Pro, which has a contract with the city to haul away refuse, intends to consolidate collection of garbage, recycling and yard debris to just one day a week, rather than three separate days for each type of waste.

However, any changes to the schedule would require city approval, city manager Scott Dadson said.

The intent of the scheduling change is to better spread the workload and provide better, more immediate customer service, Waste Pro operations supervisor Jim Lewis said.

"I think the added benefit for the homeowners is instead of having garbage trucks running through their neighborhood two, three days a week, it'll only be one day," he said.

All company trucks serving the area would be labeled according to the type of garbage they collect and would be sent to particular areas on what is now trash day for those residents, Lewis said. For example, residents who put out household garbage on Wednesdays would also put out their recycling and yard debris on that day.

"There should be plenty of continuity when it comes to the service," Lewis said.

Also, each area of the city would be picked up on a different day -- for example, downtown on Mondays and Mink Point on Tuesdays.

However, bulk pickup, which must be scheduled, would be available five days a week instead of just one.

The city and the hauler have not agreed upon a start date for the new schedule, Dadson said. Lewis said it could begin Jan. 6, the first full week of the new year. More information should be available next week, according to Dadson.

Sending out all the trucks each day would cost Waste Pro "a little more money," Lewis said, but that cost won't be passed on to customers.

"Nothing in this should increase cost to residents at all," he said. "This is not a device to increase revenue. This is a device to increase customer service."

Residents will still pay $16.20 a month, a charge tacked on to their Beaufort-Jasper Water & Sewer Authority bill through its collection agreement with the city. City Council increased that rate this summer from the previous rate of $13.50.

Waste Pro's contract with the city, which began in August 2009, runs through July 31, and the city has an option to extend the deal for three additional, one-year terms.

Waste Pro and the city of Beaufort will circulate information about the changes through neighborhood groups, announcements and the city's website at cityofbeaufort.org.

Follow reporter Erin Moody at twitter.com/IPBG_Erin.

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