County garbage pickup still backed up

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PILING UP – As it is in many carts around the county, the garbage is piling up in this cart in front of Cassie Meggs’ residence on Baker Road as Republic Waste Management struggles to get a handle on the garbage collection issue in Carroll County.

“It’s just terrible,” said Cassie Meggs on Thursday regarding the garbage collection situation.

According to Meggs, who lives on Baker Road not far from the Carroll County 1000-Acre Recreational Lake, her garbage has not been picked up for the past three weeks, as evidenced by the mounding sacks of garbage overtopping her garbage cart out at the road’s edge.

Meggs said that when Republic Waste Management took back over county garbage collection services, things went well at first. County government entered into a 90-day emergency agreement with Republic back in late October after Red River Waste Solutions declared Chapter 11 bankruptcy and stopped providing services in Carroll County.

“When they (Republic) first started back up, it was doing okay,” said Meggs. “But not now.”

In a telephone interview on Monday, County Mayor Joseph Butler said that he has recently spoken with Republic rep. Jeremy Keith, and Keith told him that they are hoping to have weekly pickup services up and going for all county residents during the first month of 2022.

Butler said that Keith advised him that Republic has hired a couple of drivers, one who is starting this week, and the company has managed to get hold of a couple of trucks needed for county routes.

“Hopefully, they can meet those expectations and provide relief for customers,” said Butler, who apologized for the inconvenience being experienced by many county residents. He added that his office, county commissioners, and the office of Solid Waste Director Jeff Heyduck will continue to work diligently with Republic to resolve the matter.

In particular, Butler pointed out that members of the County Solid Waste Committee recently approved a measure to excuse all county residents receiving collection services from having to pay their fees for the months of October, November, and December, and that those who prepaid for those months will be credited on future bills. Butler said the county would cover this cost from the Solid Waste Department’s fund balance.

But, for the immediate future, Butler said people should keep their garbage carts out at the curb until Republic gets around to picking it up.

“I know it’s been a really slow fix, but, obviously, we’re still in the midst of that fix,” he said.

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