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Bradford mayor’s motion would bolster garbage collection when ‘deficient’

In Bradford West Gwillimbury
Jan 19th, 2017

New Tecumseth Free Press

For the second time in less than six months, Simcoe County’s curbside collection contractor, Progressive Waste Solutions (PWS), has had to defend its service delivery levels, including missed routes, which over the past three weeks, are blamed on weather conditions.

Last summer, PWS was also missing routes due to staffing shortages, which required renewed hiring and training efforts.

A report to County councillors on the January 24th agenda highlights December’s issues that start about December 15. Problem dates included: Dec. 15, 22, 26, 27, 29, 30, 31, Jan. 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7 and 10. The report notes currently there are 61 side load compacting collection vehicles, two top load recycling trucks, six mini trucks and six supervisor vehicles, for a total fleet of 75 trucks utilized for the County contract.

“There were no days that collections were cancelled outright due to conditions, however many days collection was impacted to varying degrees. Progressive waste maintains that a shortage of staffing, as was encountered this past summer was not an issue in these more recent missed collections; however, one day, Thursday January 5th, collections were not fully routed due to approximately 15 staff that were not able to report to work at 5:30 a.m. in Barrie due to road conditions in North Simcoe and Wasaga Beach.”

The terms of the County’s waste collection contract leaves it to the contractor’s discretion whether it is safe to provide collections during instances of severe weather and/or poor driving conditions. In that case they collect double the regular limits on the next scheduled collection day for the area.

Simcoe County councillor Rob Keffer, mayor of Bradford West Gwillimbury, has served a notice of motion expected to be tabled at the Jan. 24th meeting, whose preamble suggests “the recent contractors collection methods have been deficient and not fulfilled the expected service standards.”

If successful, Mr. Keffer’s motion would “direct staff to report on optional means of waste collection with the use of County staff, when and where applicable and costs be reimbursed to the County by the contractor.”

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