By Jeff Gallatin
Mayor Debbie Sutherland is seeking a meeting with officials at Republic Services in an effort to avoid any further problems as a result of the labor dispute this month between the business and Teamsters who pick up area trash and recycling.
Sutherland said she also is asking to take part in the meeting of mayors from other cities that had trash and recycling services delayed as a result of the Teamsters servicing western Cuyahoga County and eastern Lorain County cities showing support for their fellow Teamsters who are striking in the Youngstown area. Republic’s trash and recycling pickup in the communities resumed its normal schedule Monday, but Sutherland said she wants to make sure everything is back to normal and that customers won’t be seeing any more disruptions.
“I’m going to watch and see how things go with the pickup this week,” she said. “But we still need to address what happened and see if there are any other possible problems. I’d like to have the meeting so we don’t have anything like this happen again.”
Bay Village’s normal trash and recycling pickup is Tuesday, but it was delayed several days last week as a result of the second service disruption. Trash was picked up several days late, while the recycling was not picked up at all. City service department workers made arrangements to pick up yard waste in the city. Sutherland said because of the earlier one-day delay on April 1, followed by the one last week, Republic officials need to let the communities how they will be handling the problems.
“It’s been an inconvenience for city residents who rely on the service as well as for the city itself,” she said. “We want to talk the situation over with Republic.”
Sutherland said Monday Republic has already dealt with one of her concerns by agreeing to reimburse the city for expenses such as the salaries of city workers pressed into service, equipment use as well as crediting the city for missed pickups.
She said she plans to contact cities in both Cuyahoga and Lorain counties such as Fairview Park, North Olmsted, Avon Lake, Avon and North Ridgeville, which also were affected by the pickup disruptions.
“I would imagine they will have some expectations of their own,” she said, noting Fairview Park Mayor Eileen Patton also has concerns, and she has seen a letter written to Republic by Avon Lake Councilman at Large Dan Bucci and signed by the mayor and other City Council members.
Dave Kidder, Republic’s manager for municipal services in this area, said Monday the company will meet with city officials.
“We’re always willing to meet with the municipal officials and hear what they have to say,” he said.
Sutherland said she expected to have the meeting after seeing how Republic performed its contracted services this week.