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Tuesday, February 20, 2018, 1:51 p.m.

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Yard waste collection slated for Monday in Springdale

By Laurinda Joenks

This article was published February 14, 2018 at 1:07 a.m.

SPRINGDALE -- As residents work to keep their yards neat, so will Waste Management, the company collecting Springdale's trash, recyclables and yard waste.

The company will pick up all yard waste each Monday throughout the city starting April 1. Residents who have trash and recycling collection on Monday will see a change in collection day, said George Wheatley, the Fayetteville-based area manager for public affairs for Waste Management.

Rates to residents will not change.

Yard waste includes grass clippings, leaves and hedge clippings.

The City Council voted 6-1 Tuesday to amend and extend its contract with Waste Management for two years until Nov. 30, 2023. The amendment calls for the new service. The city pays nothing to Waste Management for the service; rather the company bills customers through the city's Water Department.

Waste Management serves nearly 20,000 homes in Springdale, and about 2,500 to 3,000 residents will be affected with changes in their service dates, Wheatley said.

An additional truck, a driver and a helper will be required to fulfill the service. The truck will be transferred from another Waste Management service area, and the crew will be hired locally, Wheatley said. The truck and crew will join the fleet picking up yard waste each Monday and for regular household service the rest of the week.

Running an additional truck will cost Waste Management $220,000 a year, with the truck and crew working 10 hours a day. The cost of maintaining the truck, fueling the truck and paying the crew costs about $85 a day, Wheatley said.

City officials often receive complaints about the yard waste, said Mayor Doug Sprouse. Residents work in their yards over the weekend, but some trash collection days aren't until late in the week. So residents have to haul the yard waste bags back out to the streets or the bags sit on the curbside until Thursday or Friday, Sprouse said.

Wyman Morgan, the city's finance and administration director, developed the idea and began conversations in October with Waste Management.

"I think it's one of the most innovative ideas," Wheatley said. He knows of no other cities with a similar schedule. "We may be leading the way. The company is excited about it.

"If you have yard waste, and you have it to the curb by Monday morning, we're going to get it," Wheatley said.

Councilman Jim Reed said he supports the program but said he doesn't want his collection day to change. He lives in the still-rural northwest section of the city, and his collection schedule has changed six to eight times. He knows how unsettling a change in schedule and habits can be.

"But I have no problem giving Waste Management a two-year extension on their contract," Reed said. "We have the lowest trash service rates than any other city in Northwest Arkansas."

Councilman Mike Overton voted against the extension of the contract. He said the city adds services, thus extending the contract with Waste Management every few years. This prevents a competitive bidding process with other companies, he said.

The city first signed the contract for trash collection with Sunray Services on Dec. 12, 1995. The current extension is the fifth change in services and extension of the original contract. Waste Management is the successor of Sunray Services.

NW News on 02/14/2018

Print Headline: City's yard waste collection slated Monday

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