VALDOSTA, GA (WALB) - Lowndes County Commissioners voted to allow Deep South Sanitation and other trash collection companies to apply for a franchise to collect trash in the county.
A special called meeting was held Monday afternoon to discuss the issue. Under the new ordinance adopted at the meeting, any company that wants to could, as of March 17th, apply for a franchise to collect trash in the county.
The county had been trying to get Deep South to stop collecting trash in the unincorporated areas because it violated the county's exclusive agreement with Advanced Disposal. But, the county adopted a new, non-exclusive agreement with Advanced Disposal at the meeting, eliminating that issue.
Also part of the new agreement with Advanced Disposal, the company can increase its price if it wants to. But, the commissioners set a cap of $20 per month on the price of trash collection by any company in the county.
"Our business is a small business. It's doin' well and it's growing, but we'd like to get past this," said Deep South Sanitation owner Cary Scarborough.
"I would say we're happy. We are a Lowndes County business. We have 75 employees here. We wanna be sure we stay in business," said Steve Edwards, Georgia Municipal Marketing Manager for Advanced Disposal.
Scarborough said after the meeting that there were still some details that he wanted to work out with the county before applying for the franchise, specifically what price he would pay to use the county's landfill. He did not specify when he planned to apply for a franchise.
Advanced Disposal will also be reopening two collection centers in the county, one located at 4758 Loch Laurel Rd. and the other at 4040 Pine Grove Rd. "By reopening two collection centers that the county once had," Edwards said, "that's going to give most of the county residents a lot of relief."
Commissioner Mark Wisenbaker expressed opposition to the county mandating that Advanced Disposal's collection centers be open on Sundays, saying the county should not tell Advanced Disposal how to operate. County Commission Chairman Bill Slaughter stated that the point in mandating it was to ensure that the centers stayed open on the weekends so as to provide maximum convenience to residents in the county.
Edwards said Advanced is expected to increase its price to around $17 per month, up from the current $12.80 per month, but he said the exact price had not been determined as of Monday. The price will take effect April 1st.