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Price break for garbage intact for city’s seniors

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POSTED June 8, 2014 9:52 p.m.

LATHROP – It has been five years since the Allied Waste Corporation asked for any sort of a rate increase for seniors.

And in a show of good faith, the company – which has held the city’s exclusive sanitation rights for more than a decade – agreed to extend that for at least another 12 months.

But they’re not getting off completely scot free either.

As part of a new five-year exclusivity contract, every resident will pay a one-time $0.36 fee that will help cover the cost of a secondary city-wide cleanup day – which will include curbside e-waste pickup – and a host of other contracted community agreements like scholarships and mandatory involvement at local functions. As per the contract, the rates themselves will remain the same and the increases will be calculated as that one-time fee coupled with the annual Consumer Price Index amount based on 2.78 percent for this Northern California area.

So the cost of doing business isn’t getting more expensive, it’s just that the company is offering more than what they previously had – weekly household battery recycling will also be something that they offer per the contract – at least that’s the way that Vice Mayor Omar Ornelas boiled it down.

It was Mayor Sonny Dhaliwal that asked that if at least for another year the company could agree to forego the increase for seniors – noting that their bills are always continuing to go up everywhere they look but their income remains the same. A representative from Allied said that as long as the $.36 was collected on the bill, they would be willing to come back next year and figure it out then.

With council approval, the monthly garbage bill for a family with a medium sized garbage can will increase from $27.31-a-month to $28.43-a-month. The average family will see a $1.14 increase on their monthly bill, and that number would likely be smaller for mobile homes or smaller units.

The CPI increase was already allowed under the previous contract, placing only the $.36 fee as the new addition to cover the twice-a-year curbside and e-waste pickup (and a host of others, like battery recycling) into the contract as stipulations.

The City of Lathrop will receive a franchise fee from Allied for signing a long-term contract – its third – that will return a portion of the money received by carting of waste. San Joaquin County also requires language that adds a $2-a-ton addition regardless of whether the garbage is disposed of here or outside of the county.

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