Berryville in negotiations for garbage contract

BERRYVILLE — Town Manager Keith Dalton is in negotiations with a firm interested in collecting Berryville’s garbage in the future.

Waste Management and Republic Services, the town’s current solid waste collector, submitted bids after a request for proposals (RFP) for a new contract was issued earlier this year.

“Both are very good firms with a history of providing service in this area,” Dalton said.

Berryville Town Council recently authorized Dalton to negotiate with the firm which council members believe submitted the best proposal. Dalton declined to identify that firm or discuss negotiations or either proposal.

He said he expects a new contract will be finalized by July 1, when the new fiscal year begins. However, the contract will not be effective until Jan. 1, he noted.

The existing contract with Republic was set to expire on June 30. The council and Republic extended the contract through Dec. 31 to provide time to resolve concerns brought to town officials’ attention by companies which initially expressed interest in the new contract.

One concern, Dalton has said, was the RFP not specifying a maximum number of “toters” — plastic garbage containers that roll out to the curb — for each home and business along collection routes. That has been resolved.

Single-family, detached homes will be issued one toter. If they want two, they will have to pay for the second.

Duplexes and townhomes will be issued one toter per residential unit. They will not be able to pay for more.

Commercial-type businesses (including restaurants) and institutions (schools, for example), as well as apartment buildings with three or fewer units, within Berryville’s commercial zoning districts will be able to receive curbside garbage collection. They will be issued one toter, but they can pay for up to three more.

Curbside recycling services will be provided to houses, duplexes and townhomes. They can choose to receive either two 16-gallon bins or one 35-gallon cart. Extra bins and carts will not be issued.

Businesses, institutions and smaller apartment buildings in the commercial district each will be issued only one recycling cart. They can choose either a 35-gallon cart or a 96-gallon cart.

The other concern posed by garbage collection firms was having enough time to prepare to handle Berryville’s garbage collection and recycling needs, such as by purchasing toters and other equipment, according to Dalton.

Last year, Berryville paid Republic approximately $194,000 for garbage collection, $65,000 for recycling services and $40,000 to cover “tipping fees” charged to dump materials at a landfill in Frederick County.

Unlike many localities, Berryville doesn’t charge residents and businesses monthly fees for garbage collection. The town instead covers the service through revenues it collects.