RED BANK: TRASH PICKUP MAY GO PRIVATE

rb garbage truckTrash pickups by borough employees could end this year. (Photo by John T. Ward. Click to enlarge)

By JOHN T. WARD

Red Bank residents could see the end of local government trash pickups this year.

In a move that contemplates a switch to private cartage, the borough council authorized a solicitation of bids for garbage and recyclables collection and disposal at its bimonthly meeting Wednesday night.

The vote on the measure was 5 to 1, with Councilwoman Juanita Lewis dissenting.

Councilman Ed Zipprich, who serves as liaison to the public utilities department, said he had asked DPW head Gary Watson to work up “a complete analysis of current costs” of trash and recycling removal “so we’re comparing apples to apples” when the bids come in.

Lewis, however, who participated in the meeting via Skype, voiced concerns about the impact on jobs.

“We employ people in DPW,” she said. “We need to understand the numbers, the full cost-benefit.

“I have some concerns about going down this road, and that’s all I’m going to say,” she said.

Freddie Boynton, a former DPW employee, told the council that private collection won’t work, because some of the streets are too narrow for truck used by private haulers.

“You’re going to have a lot of upset peoples, trust me,” he said.

Borough Administrator Stanley Sickels told the Asbury Park Press that the town has roughly a dozen trash haulers picking up commercial waste in town. In 2008, the borough extended to nonprofits the same limit it imposes on residents: two household-sized barrels of trash per scheduled pickup. Otherwise, private arrangements are required.

The council hopes to settle the question before the 2014 budget is adopted, Sickels told the Press.

Neighboring Fair Haven and Little Silver have private haulage for their residents. Fair Haven’s switch in 2011 has saved the borough an estimated $800,000 in truck costs alone, Councilman Jon Peters told redbankgreen last year. The town pays a hauler $183,000 a year, plus landfill fees.

Here’s the resolution: RB Resolution 14-36

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