Westminster gets 4 bids for handling trash pickup Recommendation due at council meeting

March 09, 1998|By Sheridan Lyons | Sheridan Lyons,SUN STAFF

Westminster received bids for its trash-hauling contract from four of the nation's largest companies.

City employees are reviewing proposals submitted by the four bidders: Waste Management, BFI, USA Waste, and York Waste Disposal, part of the larger Republic Corp. of South Florida.

"The apparent low bidder was York Waste Disposal. They committed to a collection cost lower than what we pay now," said Thomas B. Beyard, the city's director of planning and public works.

The city's current contract with Waste Management costs $73 per residential unit per year, plus the cost of disposal -- for a total of $95 to $100 a ton. The new bids indicate the cost would be $84.12 for York vs. $93.75 for Waste Management.

BFI was the second-lowest bidder and USA Waste the highest, Beyard said.

"We want to make sure that we're comparing apples and apples," he said, explaining that variations in the companies' proposals -- such as using the Carroll County landfill or hauling the trash to Pennsylvania or Virginia -- would affect the actual cost.

"Collection is just one part of the cost," he cautioned. "Disposal is another. We could pay a little more on the collection end and pay less on the disposal end."

If out-of-state landfills were used, it might cost more to have the trash moved through a transfer station in Jessup by truck and train, he said. At the same time, he said it makes good sense for the community to save space at the county landfill, "which only gets more valuable."

After evaluating the proposals and checking references, Beyard said he will make a recommendation to the mayor and Common Council tonight. The new contract probably will be decided later this month and will become effective July 1.

The companies were asked to submit proposals for three-year and five-year contracts to serve the city's 4,200-to-4,300 residents in single-family homes, duplexes, and apartments with fewer than three units, Beyard said. Larger apartment buildings and townhouse developments have private collection agreements.

The city's annual budget for all waste collection is about $548,000, he said. While most of this covers the cost of the private hauler, it also includes city services such as bulk and yard-waste pickup, personnel and other services not provided by the contractor.

Pub Date: 3/09/98

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