Tuesday, September 25, 2007

South County Residents Shout Down County’s Trash Program

More than 300 county residents attended the third in a series of meetings conducted by County officials this past Monday, September 24, 2007 at Affton High School. The purpose of the meeting was to solicit input from county residents regarding the County’s trash collection program. County officials got just that as residents spoke loud and clear that the plan, as proposed, is definitely NOT WANTED. Approximately 80 residents spoke on the legislation – 79 were against while only one spoke in favor. (Note: Click on photos to enlarge)

While the County says they have been working on this plan for 10+ years, there are far too many unanswered questions for such a program to be implemented by January 1, 2008. The County has identified eight trash districts covering the unincorporated areas of the county. Separate bids will be obtained for each area. While minimum standards are established for each district, rates are subject to vary between the trash districts.

Here’s a partial list of some of the comments and information presented during the meeting.

- The trash program is not being “proposed.” It’s a done deal. It’s been voted on by the County Council and approved. It’s now entering the stage of being implemented.
- Residents feel they have not been properly informed by County officials and misled in some cases.
- Since no bids have yet been taken, there is no idea as to the projected cost to residents for the trash services.
- All of the services being proposed in the new program are available to residents today.
- The legality of St. Louis County requiring residents to enter into a contract with trash haulers is questionable.
- County residents want freedom of choice in selecting their carrier. This issue is not about price or the overall program, but freedom of choice.
- Costs could vary between trash districts which is no different than trash costs varying today between trash haulers. Each district will be bid separately.
- Some county residents living on the same block pay different rates for the same service. This is no different than buying similar food products from the same grocery store. Consumer beware!
- There’s no doubt that some small trash haulers may be put out of business.
- A subdivision may opt out if they should have a contract with a carrier prior to the bid process, however, the exemption may only be good for a year or two. (Another unanswered question) At least two thirds of the residents must approve.
- The County will contract for trash services from a carrier under a three year contract.
- There is a potential for discounts for seniors, but no mention of the handicap.
- Suggestions for South County residents to incorporate drew widespread applause and cheers.
- A Solid Waste Commission has been established which consists of county residents, subdivision trustees and County officials, however, no one could name members of this commission, nor the names of the County Council members when questioned.
- Some who spoke said they came to the meeting in favor of the program, but changed their mind after hearing the questions and answers discussed during this meeting.

County Council members include the following:

District 1 – Hazel Erby, 615-5436
District 2 – Kathleen Burkett, 615-5437
District 3 – Colleen Wasinger, 615-5438
District 4 – Michael O’Mara, 615-5439
District 5 – Barbara Fraser, 615-5441
District 6 – John Campisi, 615-5442
District 7 – Gregory Quinn, 615-5443


  1. Caroline Cannon8:53 PM

    I attended the meeting last night as well as the North County one and some of the information presented last night was different. I heard some of the same speakers and they were correct it appears that areas as it is now, will be paying different amounts for trash and some not receiving senior citizen discounts.

    When I heard them speak about $11.00-$13.00 a month where my bill is now $117.00 for three months which is unfair and yet some of my neighbors pay less. Unity is needed all over and consideration for seniors and handicapped. We have been trying to get our 1,060 home owners to get one hauler for over 5 years. We will continue to pursue a better and more feasible pricing hauler.

    I am adding an email address to this reply please add it you your list.

  2. Anonymous4:16 PM

    The re-occupancy program, trash districts and allowing vehicles to be parked in yards is not enhancing the county position and will help us in our annexation efforts.