The city of Mentor, OH has announced that their quarterly trash removal rate will jump from $20.40 up to $22.26. Evidently, there were a number of factors at work behind this price hike, which amounts to a 2% increase over the rate from the previous quarter.
The city manager, Kenneth Filipiak, attributes the increase to a contractual obligation with Waste Management, as well as a reduction in grant money from Lake County. Waste Management landed the contract to provide waste collection services for Mentor in 2011. Under the terms of the contract, Waste Management is allowed to increase rates by 2% for every year of operation, for a total of five years. But even with the annual price increase, the city of Mentor has reportedly saved $500,000 annually since switching to Waste Management.
The other factor involved in the rate increase is a reduction in grant money coming from Lake County. The County gave Mentor $126,929 in grant money to jumpstart the city’s curbside recycling program. But the money is being trimmed by 20% for the upcoming year and by 50% in 2014. The cost of operating the recycling program will now be built into the trash collection rates of Mentor residents.
The rate increases in this Cleveland suburb provide a unique window on how cities handle residential garbage disposal. There are many towns around Cleveland that contract with waste management companies, much as Mentor does. But there are also a number of residents who receive waste collection services, including Cleveland dumpster rentals, from publicly owned trash haulers.
Municipal garbage collectors in Cleveland operate garbage trucks and Cleveland dumpster rentals that are paid for with taxpayer money. Municipal trash collectors perform the same function as waste management companies, but with the added luxury of not having to negotiate prices and contracts. It also allows residential users a greater influence in setting prices, since city hall has the final say on virtually every aspect of the trash collection service.
At least for Mentor, however, it seems that private trash collection is working out just fine.