Mayors to seek change in trash removal method

October 06, 1994|By Kerry O'Rourke | Kerry O'Rourke,Sun Staff Writer

Town mayors are expected to push Carroll County commissioners today to make a decision to change the way trash is collected in the county.

The commissioners have invited 30 people -- the county's eight mayors and 22 representatives from trash removal and recycling companies -- to a 2:30 p.m. meeting at the County Office Building to discuss the issue.

Commissioner Donald I. Dell said yesterday that he doesn't expect the board to reach any conclusions today. Mr. Dell said he does not want to change the current system, in which residents contract with private haulers.

County residents pay $108 to $180 a year to private haulers, who crisscross the county to get to customers.

The mayors want the commissioners to divide the county into districts and contract with haulers to collect trash in each district. They say residents would pay less for service that way.

Five towns -- Westminster, Hampstead, Taneytown, New Windsor and Union Bridge -- have a joint contract with Waste Management Inc. to collect trash.

The annual cost is about $85 per household.

Small haulers have said they would go out of business if forced to bid against large haulers for county contracts.

Last month, Commissioner Julia W. Gouge suggested the commissioners meet with the mayors and trash haulers to discuss the issue. She said she wanted more information before deciding whether to change the collection system.

Commissioner Elmer C. Lippy said yesterday that he is ready to decide.

He advocates a countywide collection system.

Westminster Mayor W. Benjamin Brown, a candidate for commissioner in the Nov. 8 election, challenged the board last month to decide before the election.

Mr. Dell said he would not be pushed into doing that. He and Mr. Lippy are running for re-election; Mrs. Gouge is not.

Citizens committees have studied the issue of trash disposal in the past two years.

In January, the Solid Waste Collection Study Committee split 5-5 over whether the county should contract with private haulers.

Half of the committee recommended the county hire haulers; the other half said the county should not change the collection system.

Mr. Brown has criticized the commissioners for naming representatives of three hauling companies to the committee.

The commissioners said it is important to get comments from the people involved in the issue.

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