Jacksonville City Council Approves Single License Proposal For Residential Waste Hauler With GFL

By Benjamin Cox on October 13, 2022 at 3:26pm

Some Jacksonville residential trash customers will see relief on their trash bill at the start of next year.

On Tuesday, the Jacksonville City Council unanimously approved a proposal from Canada-based waste management company GFL Environmental.

City Clerk Skip Bradshaw says that the bidding process was waived because the city only received two proposals: “We received two proposals – one from GFL, one from Republic. We sent out a different one to Waste Management. We did not get anything back from them. The GFL contract was the lowest bid. It fulfilled all but a handful of our requests that I think we can live with. The cost is $17.29 per month, which breaks out to $51.87 per quarter. Then, whether the council wants to go to a 5-year or 7-year contract is the next decision. The 7-year price only goes up to $21.88 per month, which is still less than $65 per quarter; and that is a lot less than what we are paying currently.”

Bradshaw says that City Attorney Dan Beard received the contract on Tuesday morning and will be going over the language prior to a vote from the City Council at their next meeting. Beard said during Tuesday’s meeting that he has concerns with language in the contract with GFL surrounding fuel surcharges to customers’ bills. Beard says that any disagreements on a fuel surcharge on bills between the city and GFL would go to possibly binding arbitration. Beard would like the contract to instead go to third-party mediation on any disagreements. Beard says he will speak with GFL to see if they are amendable to that change.

The proposal is for residential customers only and not for any commercial customers in Jacksonville. Bradshaw says that owners of apartment complexes of a certain size need to pay attention to this distinction: “The proposal is residential up to a four-plex. Anything that is a five-plex or more is considered commercial. I do want to make sure that those that do have an apartment complex of five or more units that they contact GFL’s Sales Department and work out a contract with them. The way it was explained to me by GFL is every one of those larger apartment complexes is a different puppy. They don’t want to just put out a flat fee. I think it is up to the individual owners to reach out to them and work out his own deal.”

Bradshaw says that after an amendment to the city’s Waste Hauler Licensing ordinance, the city still has up to 5 licenses they can grant for commercial waste haulers. GFL and Republic both currently have two of those licenses, and that will remain the same according to Bradshaw. With the amendment, the residential waste hauler licenses shrink to just 1 with the upcoming proposed contract with GFL.

Bradshaw said during Tuesdsay’s meeting that the citywide contract was meant to give all Jacksonville residential customers a single, lower rate. The city has received steady complaints about the rising costs of trash bills since GFL purchased both Trash Queen and Area Disposal within the last year.