Thursday, February 21, 2008

Council Hears Objections to Trash Plan But Refuses to Make a Sound Business Decision

St. Louis County should not force residents to receive recycling services they don't want, opponents of trash collection districts told the County Council this past Tuesday.

Minimum trash collection standards that took effect on Jan. 15 require haulers to provide trash and recycling pickups once a week and bulky waste pickups twice a year. Some haulers do not offer all these services. The county is enforcing the standards by making haulers show that they will provide this service when they apply for renewal of their yearly permits on April 15.

"People should not have to pay for a service they are not going to use," said Celeste Witzel, one of the opponents.

County Council Chairman Kathleen Kelly Burkett, D-Overland, said she must pay for the recycling her city requires. "If people are going to nit-pick at trash collection service, it is not going to work," she said.

HELLO! Ms. Kelly, "nit-pick?" You got to be kidding. Is the following "nit-picking?"
  • The County Council has not discussed the annual replacement costs of trash bins now being distributed to residents in unincorporated areas. Who is going to pay for stolen and broken trash bins?
  • The selection of non-union trash haulers serving union employee residents of St. Louis County has not been discussed by the County Council. Many union residents of St. Louis County want to do business with a union trash hauler.
  • Subdivisions who opt-out can select any number of trash haulers which results in no changes what-so-ever . . . other than higher trash costs.
  • A resident who has a trash pick up on day one and a yard waste pick-up on day two, will now have a recycle pick-up on day three. For those using the county's program, this increases the truck traffic in the subdivision by 50%.
  • For those subdivisions using three haulers in a subdivision, they will have 9 trucks per week cruising the subdivision.
  • The County has no realistic budget to properly manage this program - prosecute residents who don't comply, prosecute haulers who don't comply, replace carts, require subdivision trustees to police their residents for compliance, provide manpower to manage problems, etc.

When government officials - county management, county council - fail to act on obvious problems, it's time for new officials. Nit-pick? No way. Let's run the county's business as a business. We hope you don't run your household business like this.


  1. Anonymous12:39 PM

    I agree with Celeste Witzel!
    Since Mrs. Burkett lives in Overland and she MUST pay for recycling, that's the City of Overland's law and she should take it up with them. Sounds like she doesn't like paying for recycling because she is forced to pay for it. HMMMMMMMMMMMM who does this sound like???????
    Maybe she could suggest a very sensible way to handle it without having everyone pay for it and that would be for the City of Overland to put in a recycling center. And instead of having the residents pay for it, maybe they could apply for a grant!

    Ths St. Louis County plan is very, very flawed. Sometimes I wonder if we are living in old Russia!!!!!
    Their plan would be like having some companie(s) telling everyone that their new bill rate will be $200.00 per month with everything they have to offer. If you tell them you don't want half of their items, they then tell you oh that's too bad but you will still have to pay for the ones you don't want.

  2. Anonymous2:05 PM

    On your point 4, how many trucks will be in the subdivision, what are you trying to say?

    Maybe the people in the subdivision would rather pay more for road maintenance, excess traffic, and the sweet smell of the trucks? Why shouldn't they be allowed to spend all their money on their trash if that is what they want?

    Oh, wait. You think the county's plan is bad? Let's see, with only one company picking up that leaves... 3 trucks per week instead of the 9. That is much worst.

    Even with your 3 haulers and no recycling that is still 6 trucks per week, twice what the county would provide.

    I am sure it is the subdivisions best interest to opt out of that really bad county plan.