South Jacksonville Not Looking At Exclusive Residential Waste Hauling Contract with GFL

By Benjamin Cox on January 11, 2023 at 9:27am

The Village of South Jacksonville appears like it will not be signing an exclusive residential waste hauler contract with GFL Environmental.

Trustee Todd Warrick presented his fellow board members with a comparison sheet of trash service costs between the City of Jacksonville and the village’s current trash rates. The City of Jacksonville’s 7-year exclusive residential waste hauler contract went into effect on January 1st.

Village customers are currently paying nearly $75 more per quarter for the same service. In the cross comparison, village residents are currently charged an equipment use fee for a container, fuel surcharges, and environmental surcharges whereas Jacksonville residents do not pay those fees due to the exclusive residential waste hauler contract.

Despite the large difference, Warrick says he’s all for some competition to come to the village and offer better rates to residents: “I would never sign any type of contract stating that every [South Jacksonville] resident would have to have trash service. We’ve got elderly people here that may have one bag of trash a week and somebody else takes it for them. However, the price is so high, there is no way that I would be able to say that I would give all of our service to GFL when somebody else could come in town with a lot cheaper rate.”

Warrick concluded that he believes competition is good for the economy and that he looks forward to any other offers for trash service to come to town. He says that village residents may be getting charged an exorbitant rate: “Based on 1,000 residential customers, which I was close [when I came up with this comparison sheet] – we’ve got 1,066 – that’s $74,000 a quarter difference with the city [with GFL’s rates]. That’s almost $300,000 a year more that the village is being charged than the City of Jacksonville, which I understand. You’re getting a lot more customers in Jacksonville than you are in the village, but that’s a lot. I’m not saying I would never recommend who anybody needs to go to for trash service. I’m just saying that there are options out there.”

Josh Allen of J&J Disposal of Pittsfield along with representatives from GFL were in attendance to hear Warrick’s comments. Allen spoke up saying that he was worried about how non-residential, mostly rural customers as well as dumpster and commercial businesses would be treated in the village under an exclusive contract with GFL. He said that free enterprise would make for good business and give everyone a choice on their service.

Other than information on the contract with Jacksonville, GFL’s representatives stayed silent last night and left immediately after Warrick’s presentation. Back in November, GFL had presented to the board in November a preliminary contract agreement that required every residence in South Jacksonville sign up to receive the exclusive lower rate like in Jacksonville. They also asked to place those on a list who do not get the service to be fined by the village. The Village Board and Village Chief of Police Eric Hansell said they would not require village residents to sign up to an exclusive trash service nor would they be “the trash police.”

Following the South Jacksonville presentation, WLDS News spoke with City of Jacksonville officials about the exclusive residential waste hauler contract in the city who confirmed that neither the city ordinance or the contract required residents to take trash services from GFL.

No action was taken last Thursday night by the village board on the issue.