Wednesday, February 18, 2009

Trash hauling bid - Council must act

As I mentioned last Friday, the Town needs to take action - if it is to ensure uninterrupted trash hauling on July 1. And though I emailed Councilmen Ecke and Altieri twice last week with ideas for moving forward... I hadn't heard back from either of them by tonight... so I emailed them a third time.

Maybe there's a problem with email?

If I don't hear back from them sooner, I'll probably call them this weekend (it's too late to call tonight). I'm hoping they already have a plan for moving forward. But if they don't, my idea is to issue a bid request for several options:

1) 1 yr contract only - standard pickup
2) 6 yr contract only - standard pickup
3) 1 yr contract (standard) + 5 yr contract (automated)
4) 3 mos contract (standard) + 5 yr contract (automated)

Though I'm not an expert, that seems to me to be a reasonable way to address the short time frame... while still bidding the contract.

Tim White


Anonymous said...

What are they waiting for?

Maybe they want to see what Mr. Devylder wants them to do??

Put it out to bid and get it done, the way it should have been done originally.

Why Altieri took so long is a mystery to me. This should have been put to rest long before now.

I like the 4 different options from you Tim. It gives us some options that could work well.

Robert DeVylder Jr said...

Before you break my stones, tell me who you are. OR are you imbarassed by your thoughts and are afraid of what others may think?

P.S. - Another wonderful job by the town to keep businesses in town. Once again, THE WORST TOWN TO DO BUSINESS WITH!

Anonymous said...

What is the difference in cost between the way it is picked up now and automated?

It would seem that there would be a higher cost for automated as it requires special equipment and in many cases it could be slower than the curren method.

Before we go automated, can we check with a few towns that are using sutomated to insure it is all some people think it to be.

Also, could we get two prices, one for automated and one for manual?

Robert DeVylder Jr. said...

Very good idea! Currently our waste is picked up manually, meaning that 2 people are hired to work off the back of the truck and pick up the trash by hand, or manually. The bonus to this method is that a crew of 2 (driver and 2 loaders) can pick up all the trash on a street in 1 pass. These guys also do not care usually how much trash you put out weekly.

Automatic trucks (robotic arms that reach out and grab 1 can) can only work on 1 side of the street at a time doubling how long a truck is on a street. At 5am, that can be alot of noise. Every winter, you would have to clear a spot to put the can so the truck can reach it. Households usually only recieve 1 can, so if you are currently filling 2 regular cans, you will probably not have enough space.

Also, these trucks cost more to purchase and repair. A company using these trucks will probably want to start working earlier in the morning or want to use more trucks daily than are currently being used. That costs more in fuel, insurance, equipment, drivers, wear and tear....

People that travel on main roads in town will probably get stuck behind a garbage truck more often as they move much slower than manual trucks.

One last point, automated pickup tends result in trucks making more noise because they are in an area longer or will be there when previous trucks were not. More time, more noise, more exhaust, more unemployeed.

tim white said...

Also, could we get two prices, one for automated and one for manual?

That's was very much the intention of this post. I used the word "standard." I used it in the same sense you use "manual."

Robert raises a lot of good points. But I expect that automated would be cheaper over a five to ten year period... of course, that's the cost side... not the service / benefit side. All things that need to be considered.

I understand that many of the private trash haulers in Southington have changed to automated. Presumably the profit-motive encouraged the change from manual to automated.

Anonymous said...

That's what I like to see, some agreement here.

We should look into other avenues and put it out to bid. We should not have just accepted teh extension from AJ's.

It is is a feasible method, we should look into it.
Why did we wait so long to do this?

Robert DeVylder JR. said...

Something else to look at with the surrounding towns.... many have more than 1 trash hauler.

Wallingford residents contract independantly thus you can have a different garbage truck picking up either way up to 6 days a week on the same street.

Meriden residents get trash removal from the city, but again, in some instances, 1 side of the street gets picked up on Monday by 1 company and the other side gets picked up on Tuesday by another.

Southington also uses multiple haulers and some people pay the hauler directly yet some people are covered by the town.

(Before anyone jumps down my throat, I talked to some friends in each of these towns to find out how their garbage is handled)

One common complaint I have heard about automated pick up is the noice from the truck and the limited amount of garbage a household can put out. If you have the chance to see one of these trucks in action, the typical process is to stop at a house, throttle up, grab the can, dump it into a hopper and bang it a few times to get all the trash out, and usually drop the can on the ground. In a tight neighborhood, this could serve as your alarm clock starting at 4am. Manual trucks are a bit quieter as they do not have to throttle up as often and are usually out of any area rather quick.

Some of these towns have problems (small and not newsworthy) with residents putting their excess trash into town dumpsters or illegally dumping in wooded areas. Cheshire can be considered pretty clean but I think that some of that is residents and some is the ability to throw out all trash once a week.

tim white said...

Two additional points...

Meriden is currently two areas - central Meriden is municipal pickup for residential. Non-central Meriden is private pickup. But Meriden is now thinking of revamping that setup... if I understand their situation correctly.

West Hartford changed from manual to automated in the past two years. A CHS buddy of mine lives in West Hartford. He said they changed a couple years ago and basically recalled that people were initially questioning the automated pickup (the single can was really big), but that there's really no complaints with it... and with regard to weeks in which people have lots of trash... they just ask their neighbors to use their cans... and no one ever cares. They all share... with Christmas being a notable exception.

Anonymous said...

Will the automatic truck be able to throw my can onto the ground so it the good ole boys from AJs

Anonymous said...

This reader is still trying to understand the link between oil and garbage. Is Mr. Devylder about to move out of oil and go into the garbage business?

Concerning the current collection crews, all too often after they come by we have to spend time picking up all the trash they dumped on the street instead of into the truck. Even so in these bad economic times it might make more sense to have collection trucks staffed by 3 instead of 1 person. After all employment rates seem to be going down daily - - -

Robert DeVylder JR. said...

Cant believe I have to say this, but why cant I comment on something other than oil? I doubt that you are in the trash industry so why are you commenting? Are you starting a trash company? Are you going to call it Anonymous Garbage?

Again, are you imbarassed by your thoughts? What are you, a telephone tough-guy? (more like an internet-idiot)

As I see it, I am one of the few that have the guts to put my opinion on this blog and let others know who I am. Man up for once in your life.

As for asking my neighbor if I can use his can, anyone think of identity theft or the possibility that something personal or embarassing can be found by a neighbor. (i.e. perscription bottles)

This is getting old...

Anonymous said...

Why are people Knocking Mr Devylder? He has made some important comments. We really do have to consider which method the taxpayers would like and that is based how easy it is to put trash out, how much trash can a person can put out, how recycleables are handles, noise level and time of pickup, etc.

Personally, I think the standard way permits greater flexibility to meeting peoples varying needs, and will be less stressful for the residents.

Perhaps the residents should be mad aware of the good, bad and the ugly of an automated system so that they can voice their support or opposition to automated.

Why should the residents be for an automated system? What exactly will it do to make their life better and will they feel the same way kids feel about the Ice Cream truck coming down the street?

tim white said...

Perhaps the residents should be mad aware of the good, bad and the ugly of an automated system so that they can voice their support or opposition to automated.

That's important. But it also raises another important issue... the time required to have that discussion... which leads to the question... why did the Solid Waste Chair (and / or staff) raise this at the 11th hour?

On second thought, that question is unnecessary because... these aren't the droids you're looking for. Move along.

Anonymous said...

Why are people Knocking Mr Devylder?
I believe it goes back to previous posts where he attacked Tim for pushing to bid this out rather than take AJ's 1 year deal.
Tim was right.
We need to move on now and find a solution that is effective for all of us.

As for why people post anonymously, it is for numerous reasons.
If we wanted to jump full into the politcal ring, we would let you know who we are. Just because we leave anonymous comments doesn't make then any less than those like Mr. Devylder would put his name on. Many of us have businesses here and would rather keep the politcal arena outside our business. But you can't expect us always to stay neutral. We have opinions and thank God Tim has given us this forum to voice them.
So please don't know the anonymous people, we aren't all that bad.

Most of us are as intelligent and in some cases more intelligent than those running our town. So we can add something here that hopefullly Tim will take with him to the meetings. It's too bad the others haven't done this. It would open a whole new world in Cheshire.

tim white said...

7:35 thanks. And on a related topic...

Pacificus and Helvidius were noms de plume. In other words, they weren't real names. With time, America learned the actual names of the writers:

Hamilton and Madison

I get plenty of pushback about the anonymity on this blog. I acknowledge its drawbacks. But on balance, I think the anonymity is worthwhile.

michael gallagher said...

The sad thing about this is theat the wallinger family has been arond this town for a long time. Patricia and arthur have donated a lot of time and money to the town, its students, athletics, and needs. Theu are localy owned and operated. AJ may have made a mistake, but who has not. Rob deylder is a goos guy. I do not buy oil from him either. I buy from F.F. Hitchcock oil. Yes they are owned by michzel bowman. But who cares. They offer me great prices and service. The same can be said for AJ. The price seems fair. The people who write and read this blog dont not know the old Cheshire and the way it was. When Saturday was dump day. Cappy Waszowaki and some other guy by the name of salvatore,
( i think of relative of the notch store salvatores who hang pot there and collect trash).
It was a better place. Before all you yuppies moved into town. It was simple. I can not stand how you people try to solve all the problems of the world. if yo u not like the system do not puy your trash out. In these economic times we should not consider auto pickup. It takes away jobs. Also, why not give a local company the bid, they provide tax revenue, jobs, and imcome to the local government and people. If you people think this is corruption get your head check out. This is helping a localy owned business who helps pay local taxes. By the way stop talking about hot water gate. Get the facts straight. the hired engineer on the job is who screwed the job up. why would they have to hire another engineer to finish the final review if this was not the case. Speeking of bid process, was this put out to bid, or another soI feel like we live in waterbury.

Anonymous said...

I am all for giving local companies the jobs, provided it isn't costing us more in the long run.
The only fair way to do that is to put it out to bid.
If we just gave all our jobs to businesses that were located in Cheshire, without making them competetive, we are not helping anyone else who lives and pays taxes in this town.
I realize that families like the Wallinger's, Bowmans, etc. have done some wonderful things for people who live in this town. There have also been many others though who don't have businesses here and do it just to help their community.
I like to compae it to professional sports. You love the player on your favorite team and he loves them when he gets paid what he wants and the team wins. When the player gets older and slower and still wants more money just because he has been part of that team for many years, he shouldn't get it.
Forgive the sports analogy, but as a Red Sox fan I just saw that with Varitek and I can't help but see the parrallel.

Anonymous said...

12:06 a.m. said "...The sad thing about this is theat the wallinger family has been arond this town for a long time. ..."

Indeed it is sad that the Wallanger family has been here so long and that in spite of that they put their energy into a scheme which basically defrauded not just a couple of residents but absolutely ALL town residents.

Of course they had some help in the form of town municipal employees, elected and appointed officials. It is only thanks to the federal FBI agents that this fraudulent behavior was brought to light and the guilty punished.

As a long time resident this writer is both sad and angry that another long time resident would have been part of a scheme to take money from me and my family in this fashion - - -

Town contracts should be let only after proper competitive bidding takes place with the lowest responsive bidder being awarded the work. Firms/individuals having been convicted of serious felonies should be placed on a CANNOT BID list.

Anonymous said...

I buy from F.F. Hitchcock oil.

What has that got to do with anything.

I think there is a lot more to the story of F&S going belly up and hopefully it will come to light. The receiver for F&S assets, Carlton Helming, claimed that Cheshire Investment LLC, reportedly owned by 30 Bowman families members, did make it very difficult to auction off the biofuel plant. So difficult, that instead of getting the one time projected value of $4,000,000 for the plant, it was abandoned and since it was on the land owned by Cheshire Investment LLC, it will probably end up in their ownership.

A good deed?

tim white said...

Of course they had some help in the form of town municipal employees, elected and appointed officials.

huh? Where's that coming from? I'll give you the Deluca thing on the "elected officials." But town municipal employees? And you seem to suggest elected and appointed officials in town. Can you add some links from reputable news sources?

Anonymous said...

"Of course they had some help in the form of town municipal employees, elected and appointed officials."

Just a general observation. At the end of the day the town hired the trash hauler. The town hired the trash hauler through a bid process which involved municipal employees, elected town officials and appointed town officials.

Maybe as a whole the group believes they did a stellar job in hiring a company which was proved in court to have practiced serious corrupt acts against its client. And then again when one looks at all the less than stellar undertakings a pattern seems to develop.

There seems to be plenty of circumstantial evidence showing that the town's bidding processes don't result in vey efficient procurements for the tax payers. Of course there is hotwatergate, there is the town pool, there is the high school electric heating system, there is the failed financial software system, there is the pot hole tracking computer system, and the list goes on.

The only way a town can grant contracts is through the work efforts associated with several groups - - municipal employees, elected officials, and appointed officials all working together.

Everyone should be concerned about the possible problems associated with the town contracting system. In the end, the trash hauling contract was granted to someone the feds had to jail. This should be a serious wake up call concerning town contracting practices. Hopefully this was the only time a corrupt company won a town contract and then again does the town have specific policies and processes in place to guard against corrupt practices?