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Proposed new solid waste collection service will reduce customer rates

Logo_CleanScapes_2009 PMS369_Your Private Public [1]by Ralph Nichols [2]

CleanScapes Inc. is one city council vote away from becoming the new collector of garbage, recyclables and compostables for Burien residents and businesses.

Both residential and commercial customers will see reductions in their bills. Weekly yard waste and compostable collection is included with the basic garbage and recycling service, and more items will be picked up at the curb with no additional charge.

If the CleanScapes contract is approved, the company will become Burien’s collector from next June 1 through May 31, 2021.

This seems pretty much a formality since the question was unanimously placed by council members on the calendar for their Sept. 16 meeting.

The 10-year contract for solid waste collection and recycling between the city and Waste Management of Washington Inc. expires May 31.

Nhan Nguyen, city management analyst, told council members earlier the new contract will lower the rate for residential trash pickup by $1.25 for a 32-35 gallon can, or $21.96. The commercial trash rate will be reduced by $7.07 for a one cubic yard loose container, or $75.99.

There will be free roll-out service for disabled customers and utility taxes will be waived for low-income single-family residential customers.

The contract will bring the city an additional $426,000 in increased revenue through an increase in the franchise fee from $216,000 to $684,000. The utility tax paid by CleanScapes will decrease by about $42,000 annually because of reduced service rates.

In addition, Nguyen said, the CleanScapes contract “includes multiple improvements from the current contract,” including “embedded residential yard waste and food composting, curbside recyclable pickups, graffiti removal service” plus a customer service center/retail store.

Residential garbage, yard waste and compostable pickup will be weekly with recycling pickup bi-weekly, from 7 a.m. to 5 p.m. Monday through Friday.

Commercial collection will be 24 hours a day except in areas adjacent to residential neighborhoods. City noise restrictions will apply to haulers.

There will be no pickup on New Year’s Day, Thanksgiving and Christmas.

Other collection services include:

The city issued a request for proposals for a new solid waste service contract in April. Following a review of proposals by CleanScapes, Waste Management and Republic Services Inc., staff members recommended CleanScapes to the council.

In the meantime, Nguyen added, council members “asked staff to negotiate a lower service rate, maintenance of at least the current service level, and an increase of franchise fee revenue if possible.”

Customer rates will be adjusted annually by 80 percent of the Consumer Price Index and for the actual increases in King County disposal fees.

The city has the option of two contract extensions with CleanScapes of up to two years each.

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