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New Waste Contract Will Save City $200,000

But residents need to get used to "dramatic changes" to city's waste collection policies.

Along with new 65-gallon trash and recycling carts that will be distributed to all 28,000 residences in Cranston, the new contract with Waste Management will save the city about $200,000 in the short term, according to a report by Ken Mason, director of public works.

It is also expected to boost the city's recycling rate, provide a cleaner city and reduce the rodent population by providing high strength containers that make it harder for rats to get inside and munch away.

But for the new program to be successful, it will require a "complete change in the mindset of the citizens to be successful," Mason said in his report to the City Council.

"Gone will be the days when any and all waste deposited curbside will be picked up by the city at no cost to the homeowner," Mason said. 

Instead, bulky items will have to be picked up separately, by appointment. And each bulky item will cost $18 to take away, $25 for mattresses. This is because the new bins are picked up by automated trucks with grabber arms and things like mattresses and furniture can't be picked up by those trucks.

Mason suspects some residents will get around the policy by chopping furniture into small pieces or worse, dumping mattresses in vacant lots and elsewhere in the city.

That means Mason is recommending the city hire a full time recycling coordinator with a salary of $70,000 in addition to a $100,000 contingency fund to clean up illegally discarded items.

"Hopefully this kind of action can be minimized," Mason said.

The coordinator would "provide policing activities on a daily basis by issuing verbal and written warnings to residences not in compliance with the new disposal policies," Mason wrote.

In the end, the new contract will cost the city $4.16 million — less than the $4.3 million budgeted for the current fiscal year. Though the base fee is $59,000 more, the city is paying one-third the fuel charge ($60,000 instead of $182,000) and the $226,328 mattress disposal fee is gone (residents will pay $25 per mattress now).

The base fee will increase by 3.3 percent over the life of the contract and the fuel surcharge will change based on CNG costs determined by the Dept. of Energy.

Mason said he hopes the recycling rate will increase from the current 23 percent to the state mandated 35 percent with the new bins, which hold significantly more waste than the smaller bins being used now.

The distribution of bins is expected to begin in June and automated pickup will begin in July.

The City Council is due to vote on the new contract Monday night.

Mark Schieldrop can be reached at mark.schieldrop@patch.com. Follow me on Twitter: @MarkSchieldrop

Elizabeth Roy February 22, 2014 at 07:46 AM
How will we dispose of current recycling and trash barrels, as well as yard waste?
2ferskippy February 22, 2014 at 08:12 AM
will you still have free drop off @ public works dept for tires,used oil, tv electronics and now mattresses. what abot yard waste it`s not easily transported.
Bob February 22, 2014 at 08:31 AM
Another 70k a year city job with pension and benefits. Toss that in your new 65 gallon container. It never ends
Elizabeth Roy February 22, 2014 at 09:11 AM
This position will be filled by an "It's who you know" person.
Robert Burns February 22, 2014 at 09:21 AM
This is BS! The garbage trucks never took the old mattress's or washing machine/dryers etc anyways. Over the past year I threw away a mattress and a dryer. A man came by in a stake truck and took them away. He was not just some junk man riding around looking for junk either. So the excuse that the trucks can't take them away anymore is BS! Isn't this why we pay taxes? We pay more and more and get less and less! Is the city trying to squeeze more money out of us by charging us to take our trash away?
Joseph Agresti February 22, 2014 at 09:26 AM
Can someone please clarify what happens with yard waste? Can we still put that in the brown bags?
PMarandola February 22, 2014 at 09:32 AM
Great fire the low paid workers that do all the work and hire a political cronie 70K and keep charging the tax payers. WM hasn't picked up a large appliance matress in years it's all BS. RI need to file bankruptcy & VOTE out every person in office! And we the people need to wake up & remove the &^%$ in office!
Elizabeth Roy February 22, 2014 at 09:35 AM
That is my question Joseph. Doubt if we will get an answer. And try calling anyone at City Hall for an answer! I visited housing one year ago, emailed the Mayor and called housing again regarding the vacant house next door to me. All I received was one email from some bimbo saying she worked for the mayor and would look into it and get back to me. Happy I didn't hold my breath waiting for an answer! Yup, our taxes diligently at work!
millerheaton February 22, 2014 at 10:28 AM
RE Yard Waste. I called the city about this - it will still be as it was, as third truck that comes around and takes it in barrels. Not automated because I specifically asked if I could turn my old barrels into yard waste barrels. The city needs to stop messing around about matresses, TVs and other large junk. They haven't picked that up for about 10 years yet people still throw it out on the curb. If you call to complain about it, the city will come get it. What they need to start doing is sending a truck around to pick up large items and write a bill on the spot, that'd pay for the truck. If they actually wrote the bill instead of the police department saying oh it's too much expense on the tax payers so lets just ignore it.
Tom Maltais February 22, 2014 at 10:41 AM
There are private companies that will take away appliances and mattresses for free, and maybe pay for them, for recycling purposes. If the appliances and furniture still function, then donate them to Big Brother Big Sisters or a similar organization - it's a tax write off and you're helping those less fortunate. All people need to do is put a little thought and effort into it. Yard waste disposal is a really valid concern, as is the financial burden put onto the household if they need an additional container for excessive waste or recyclables that exceed the capacity of the one container each that the city will provide. The fee for additional containers was listed in the previous article, but not in this one.
Ed February 22, 2014 at 10:43 AM
The "can collectors" are already licking their chops... Bigger bins equals more cans equals more money they get. Simple. I can't wait to watch them lay over these bids to get the cans... They make a mess now... I caught them already, interesting that the city allows this.
I_Like_EG February 22, 2014 at 11:48 AM
What a joke! I thought we moved to a good city but I am finding one thing after another is either backwards or crooked. The heck with a 70k a year recycling job!? Really?! 70k!? For what? First the position is b.s. Second if it even was needed try 35k and go up from there! The person better have a masters degree for 70k plus benefits!!! How about u lower my taxes first? The taxes always go up never down yet we get less and less services for the dollar. Fung better step up or step out. So far between this garbage debocle (pick up delays etc), high taxes, no all day kindergarten, a mediocre library, mediocre police (scandals), poor snow removal this town is almost as bad as north providence. Wake up Cranston we the people have the power stop voting in the status quo. Please vote new across the board! U people keep sticking with the same old users and abusers of the city. We have the power the politicians often forget they work for us!!! Come on Cranston!
Robert Burns February 22, 2014 at 12:20 PM
When I threw away my mattress and dryer I called City Hall first. They told me to just put it out front and somebody will come by during the day and take them. Like I said in my previous post, a man came by in a truck and took them. It was not a WM truck, why can't they continue this service? Because they want to squeeze more money from us? This is BS! But have no problem creating a $70.000 a year job?
Patrick Boyd February 22, 2014 at 05:48 PM
Does anybody here recall, or are you even aware that Cranston's own Art Handy was a primary sponsor of a bill that was passed last year regarding mattress disposal? http://news.providencejournal.com/breaking-news/2013/06/ri-house-approves-measure-for-third-party-to-dispose-of-old-mattresses.html Take note where it says this bill will save the cities and towns hundreds of thousands of dollars. Yet, we're going to be charged an additional $25 for mattress disposal that we didn't have to pay before. Something's not ringing true here.
Elizabeth Roy February 22, 2014 at 05:57 PM
Screams of back room deals as usual!
my world February 22, 2014 at 08:26 PM
ha ha ha the joke is on you Cranston residents again .just get used to seeing more shit dumped in allys wooded lots forclosed houses ha ha ha this is just the old hide the pea under the walnut trick SUCKERS! then they will complain there's shit being dumped everywhere and we need more enforcement well, for a small fee I will tell you were you can dump stuff without getting seen .
Steven r February 23, 2014 at 06:52 AM
This is just a way to get you to throw out less trash. Besides, the store selling you a new washer usually picks up the old unite for free, or included in the price. The landfill is getting full. To see what happens, just look at Providence. Besides, I once saw one bin with a a red sticker telling a resident that a $50 ticket was sent to the property owner, because recycling was tossed in with the trash, or it was the other way around.
Steven r February 23, 2014 at 06:58 AM
Why keep saying vote them out, that will never happen. Just look at Joshua Miller of Cranston. He got re elected after tacking on a surcharge on all electric bills to give welfare people free or reduced electricity, and he will get in, again. Remember this, every time you send in the bill for electricity. People forget, very quickly and vote for familiar names or not vote at all. I wouldn't be surprised if Chaffee would get re elected if he changed his mind and ran, anyway.
Sean lan February 23, 2014 at 08:23 AM
What sense does it make to have this guy negotiate any contracts for our city. Senseless thought process. You think you got a deal? These administration people are completely out of touch and we are the idiots for not having them removed from city business!
Patrick Boyd February 23, 2014 at 09:33 AM
Sean, neither Josh Miller nor Art Handy are negotiating contracts for the city. They do their damage on a state wide level in the General Assembly.
Steven r February 23, 2014 at 09:44 AM
just look at your electric bill
my world February 23, 2014 at 10:48 AM
a 50$ ticket on a bucket what a waste of paper and time. how enforceable is that ! only some people have the time to sort out trash. pay the people. not the politician or the town let residents get a check.$ for sorting and doing the right thing with there trash
Steven r February 23, 2014 at 11:09 AM
The $50 ticket was on Plainfield street in Providence. The landlord got the bill. I read it, as I walked by. The buckets seem to have bar codes. I never found out how Providence knew the wrong material was placed in the trash. Cranston may follow a different procedure on violations. Right now, I see the trash men take out the wrong materials, the automated system cannot, which means fines. The city wants you to throw out less trash and recycle more, because it is cheaper for them. Oh! and, of course they want you to buy new crap at local shops in Cranston.
Steven r February 23, 2014 at 11:14 AM
my world February 23, 2014 at 03:05 PM
THIS IS GREAT we are gonna litagate trash barrel fines bring it on !! lawyers get ready to reap in more money I will help promote this as long as I get a commission I might even throw trash in the wrong container to get the landlord fined then I will get a lil $$ this is the American way to make money. and they say capitalisim is dead
my world February 23, 2014 at 03:12 PM
we will need to hire trash enforcement cops at 50k a year with benefits of course. there will be no plastic in the yard waste not on my watch ! pay the fine or see you in court if you want to get even with your landlord this is the way to do it rack up the bill on the slumloards
Chris12 February 24, 2014 at 07:00 AM
I am a property owner in Cranston and Woonsocket. If Woonsocket residents can do this anyone can. In Woonsocket any building with 4 or more units the owner/landlord must provide the trash pick-up.
10speed March 07, 2014 at 08:48 PM
@ my world... 1st of all this... each time you F*** up by putting the wrong items in the wrong bins, you are not getting away with anything. And you are not sticking it to the landlord because they will just raise your rent or lease to make up for your mistakes. If you are a homeowner and you pull this same trick, the city does not take you to court. They just tack the bill onto your property tax base and with a hefty fine added into it as well. Are you just immune to complying with a few simple rules? Think about it. If you think Cranston is trashy ... try complying with a few of the rules and things might just improve.


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