News 12 First at Five / Monday, June 3, 2013
AUGUSTA, Ga. (WRDW) -- Augusta's new garbage contract started Monday, and a lot of you are not too happy about it. Not only does the new schedule have a lot of people on edge, but it also has put several workers out of a job. Augusta commissioners are expected to talk exemptions and all things garbage.
The people that News 12 talked to say the most important part is that their choice has been taken away.
Berry Smith Sanitation trucks are off the road, and all 16 employees, who have worked here for years, are now standing in line at unemployment office.
"All these trucks would be on the road right now picking up trash and yard waste," said James Chance, manager at Berry Smith Sanitation.
Chance's company was left out as subcontractors on the new garbage contract.
"I got to find a way to put insurance on the truck. It's hard to do on unemployment. It's hard to cover all the bills," Chase said.
Billy and Cynthia Randall live out in south Augusta.
"I've been here for 19 years and had the same service. Why can't I keep that? Why can't my neighbor keep their service? Why is it being forced on us with a service that we don't want?" Cynthia Randall said.
Randall is upset about these new trucks and the $310 bill that comes along with it.
"My neighbors have lost jobs and hours have been cut. They can't afford a price increase. It's a bad time for an increase on our taxes," Randall said.
"We are trying to tweak it and make it more user friendly," said City Administrator Fred Russell.
Commissioners are considering allowing anyone who lives 200 feet from the curb an option to not to take the service.
Besides that, the contract is signed and new trucks have been bought. The two-a-day trash service is now something of the past.
Leaders are still working out the details. For all questions about the service and exemptions, call 311.