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New Haven council wants to switch trash companies

NEW HAVEN – New Haven City Council members voted 5-2 Tuesday for a recommendation to the Board of Works to switch to a new company for the city's trash pick up as of Jan. 1.

The Board of Works is expected to discuss the issue today.

Earth First Services submitted the low bid of $7.69 a month for trash pickup and an optional $3.39 for recycling, beating out Republic Services and National Serv-All. All are out of Fort Wayne, but National Serv-All and Republic use Allen County landfills while Earth First uses a landfill in Jay County.

The current three-year contract with National Serv-All expires Dec. 31.

Currently, residents pay $23.61 quarterly for garbage pickup only. An optional recycling program is available for $3.50 a month.

The city would have received a 50 percent discount on recycling from National Serv-All if at least 30 percent of its residents participated, but currently only about 24percent recycle, Mayor Terry McDonald said.

Several members of the council said they were against mandating recycling with so few of the residents choosing to participate in the program.

Councilman Ron Steinman, R-at large, voted against the recommendation, stating that his impression was that the majority of residents were in favor of a city-wide recycling program. Sarah DiGangi, R-2nd, also voted no, although she did not say why.

If the contract is approved, new bins will be put in place during the first three weeks in January, said Gregg Walbridge, president of Earth First.

The company is also building a new recycling and trash transfer station on Meyer Road in New Haven that is expected to open in April, Walbridge said.

Residents will be able to drop off recycling items at no extra charge, he said.