A meeting to discuss the proposed increase is set for today.
By PEGGY SINKOVICH
VINDICATOR TRUMBULL STAFF
WARREN -- Mayor Hank Angelo says that if council doesn't pass a $1 a month increase for garbage collection rates, city residents will end up paying more money before the year is over.
Angelo said Wednesday the sanitation department needs more money to cover operating expenses.
"If the $1 increase goes into effect by March 1 then we should be able to generate $140,000," Angelo said. If the rate is not increased now, he added, it will end up costing residents more than $1 to cover the growing deficit.
The mayor said he informed council about the increase in October.
A meeting was scheduled for today to discuss the proposed increase.
Angelo said James "Doc" Pugh, D-6th, chairman of council's health and welfare committee, told him he would have a list of questions for him but he hasn't seen any yet.
"This is the first time since October that he has said he has questions," the mayor said.
Pugh could not be reached.
If the rate increase is passed by council the new standard monthly rate would be $13.37 for curbside collection. For backyard collection, available to elderly residents, the new rate would be $22.37.
The new monthly rates for low-income residents would be $9.12 for curbside collection and $14.72 for backyard collection.
Reason for increase
Angelo noted the reason for the increase is because employee hospitalization costs rose 133 percent, or about $161,000 over the past five years.
The mayor also cited increasing costs for wages, fringe benefits, diesel fuel and vehicle maintenance.
The last rate increase was in 2000.
City workers collect garbage in 96-gallon containers on wheels, which the city provides to residents. Although Warren is one of the few local municipalities where city workers still collect garbage, the mayor said he favors continuing the service, rather than contracting with a private company.