TRUMBULL COUNTY Warren Council mulls seeking trash pact bids

A councilman still wants to pursue a city-owned transfer station.
WARREN -- With the contract for the city's trash transfer expiring at the end of this year, council is considering legislation to seek bids for a new pact to run through 2009.
The city has had a contract for several years with Warren Recycling Inc. to use the company's transfer station on Martin Luther King Avenue, paying nearly $1 million a year. That contract expires at year's end.
Trucks from the city's environmental services department pick up trash from residents and businesses and transport it to the transfer station where it is sorted by company workers who then send it to appropriate landfills.
Warren Recycling also operates a construction and demolition debris landfill on Martin Luther King, but under law, only certain waste may be deposited there. Other waste must be transported to a solid waste landfill.
Legislation on council's meeting agenda tonight would authorize the administration to advertise for bids for a contract with an EPA-approved landfill or transfer facility from January through 2009.
Hasn't given up goal
Although he signed for and is the sponsor of the legislation, Councilman James A. "Doc" Pugh, D-6th, said he hasn't abandoned his goal of a city-owned transfer station. Pugh chairs council's health and welfare committee, which deals with the environmental services department.
"It's not a personal vendetta against Warren Recycling," Pugh said. "It's strictly business and I feel we could do it cheaper and more efficiently than paying out $1 million."
Renee Cicero, manager of the environmental services department, said the bid specifications will indicate the required turnaround time involved with city trucks transporting trash to the facility and coming back to the city. That could deter some landfills from bidding on the pact.
The city picks up between 25,000 and 26,000 tons of trash per year and transports it to the transfer station. That amount has remained consistent for several years despite the city's population loss, Cicero said.
Pugh first proposed the idea for a city-owned transfer station about two years ago. He believes it's affordable if the city uses the money it now pays to the company.
He says he sponsored the legislation for bids for a new contract because he doesn't believe a city-owned facility could be established and get up and running before the current contract runs out.
"I think we could do it cheaper and more efficiently and maybe create some more jobs in the city for that department," Pugh said.

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