Commission set to tackle garbage contracts in Tuesday's meeting

By: Ryan Houston Email
By: Ryan Houston Email

News 12 First at Five / Tuesday, June 18, 2013

AUGUSTA, Ga. (WRDW) -- Augusta's new trash contract is two weeks old, and people already want to throw it away.

"This whole thing has gotten ridiculous. We need to do something about it. It wasn't broke, and there wasn't a need to fix it. We need to get it right," said Commissioner Alvin Mason.

"It's truly a mess, but they're working hard to clean it up. We had two days service, took away a day and still charging the same amount," said Commissioner Marion Williams.

Mason did not vote for once-a-week service last year, and Williams wasn't in office, but Commissioner Corey Johnson did.

"It was designed to give people the option. For people who need the service, they shouldn't have to pay. It's all about need," Johnson said.

"They're not doing the work we thought they were going to be designed to do," Williams said.

Dozens of neighborhoods haven't seen a garage truck in weeks. News 12 has also heard reports of garbage haulers being picky about the kinds of trash they pick up.

"If you've got trash that hasn't been picked up 14 days, you don't have room to put the bags in the trash," Mason said.

Leaders say if they get rid of the trash contract, the company that bought all of these trucks could have a lawsuit on their hands.

"I don't think they will be happy with that. People need to know if we go back to twice a week, everybody has to go," Johnson said.

Johnson says it could also mean an extra $95 a year on property taxes if Augusta goes back to twice a week.

Augusta commissioners are set to vote on the trash contract and a number of other issues, including plans to make the Riverwalk safer by giving criminals nowhere to hide. Leaders took a tour of the Riverwalk to check out if there needs to be more light or any landscaping changes need to be made. They've also talked about the possibility of adding cameras.

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