Hilliard officials are making progress on a bid package for the city's new recycling and solid-waste disposal contract, and many current provisions could make recycling more convenient for residents.
Terms of the bid package were discussed Oct. 21 by City Council's City Planning, Projects and Services Committee before committee chairman Albert Iosue suspended discussion to allow for the timely start of a different committee meeting.
Committee members will resume discussions at a special meeting at 3:30 p.m. Tuesday, Oct. 29, at the Hilliard Municipal Building, 3800 Municipal Way.
The city's current contract with Rumpke for recycling and solid-waste disposal expires June 30, 2014.
Service Director Butch Seidle, charged with drafting the bid document, canvassed City Council members for policy preferences and reviewed the findings Oct. 21.
City Council members want to continue the policy of providing a 10-percent discount for recycling and refuse-disposal services for senior citizens, as well as a 10-percent discount for all residents who paid in full for one year of service upon receipt of the first quarterly bill.
Senior citizens who pay up front would receive both discounts for a 20-percent savings.
Most City Council members also considered it a good idea to maintain weekly collection of recyclable material rather than biweekly collection.
"I don't think (biweekly collection) is a good idea," Councilman Jim Ashenhurst said.
He said some residents, rather than allowing recyclable material to accrue for two weeks, would place it with trash going to the landfill.
City Council members also debated the size of bins for recyclable materials and solid waste to be provided to Hilliard customers.
Collection is expected to be automated under the new contract and customers would be provided bins to facilitate automatic pickups.
City Council members discussed whether to ask the provider for 65-gallon or 90-gallon containers.
Both have the same "footprint," but the 90-gallon container is taller and wider at the top, they said.
Attention was drawn to the probability that some people might find it inconvenient to keep two 90-gallon containers inside a garage.
Council members wanted to give residents the option to choose, but, Seidle said, the policy would muddle the bidding process because it would not be clear to providers how many would choose the larger or smaller containers.
City Council President Brett Sciotto said it would be contrary to city's effort of promoting environmentally friendly policies to limit the size of bins for recyclable materials, suggesting the city pay for the larger container if residents wanted it.
Seidle estimated that cost to be about $30 a year per bin.
As proposed in the contract bid package, each resident would receive a 65-gallon bin, one for recyclables and one for solid waste as part of the contract.
Residents wanting a 90-gallon bin for recyclables could upgrade at no additional cost, but would pay the difference for a larger solid-waste bin.
The city would take control of its own billing under the new contract and appears poised to bill semi-annually rather than quarterly.
Iosue called for an adjournment of the meeting before discussion about billing could commence.