City garbage rate to rise $1.55 a month

Published 12:00 am Monday, September 30, 2002

[09/28/02]City residents will pay an additional $1.55 per month for curbside garbage and trash collection, bringing the total to $12.60 per month starting Nov. 1.

The Vicksburg Board of Mayor and Aldermen voted Friday to increase the rate to reflect the new contract with Waste Management Inc. that will include new gallon containers and allow city residents to put tree limbs and yard clippings out with their household garbage.

The new containers are expected to be distributed to Vicksburg households by Nov. 1 when the changes will go into effect.

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“We tried to make it as low as we could and keep the rates down,” said North Ward Alderman Gertrude Young acting as mayor pro-tem in the absence of Mayor Laurence Leyens.

“This is as low as we could keep it and provide the services that city residents have been asking for,” Young said.

Under terms of the new contract, garbage will be picked up twice a week on the current schedule. The first collection day will be for household waste only and the second day will be for garbage and yard waste, said Tim Smith with the city.

Tree limbs and yard clippings can be placed in the new containers or set on the curb for pickup, but limbs must be cut to 4-foot lengths and bundled together in groups of 50 pounds or less. All household garbage must be put in the new containers to be picked up, Smith said.

The new policy also allows residents to get a second container for an additional charge of $5 per month. Smaller containers will also be available for the elderly or disabled.

“The main thing everyone needs to realize about this contract is it allows for mixed garbage and for the containers,” said South Ward Alderman Sid Beauman.

City officials also expect to save about $700,000 a year by eliminating the department that now collects yard waste on a separate day from garbage. With the rate increase, waste collection will be paid for entirely by customers with no general fund subsidy.

Garbage collection fees are included on residential bills for water, gas and sewer. The last rate increase was in August 1999 when the fee went from $7.25 to $11.05.

The amended ordinance also includes garbage collection for downtown businesses four times a week at a rate of $33.50 per month. Today, downtown business have to contract separately for garbage hauling, the same as apartment complexes and commercial firms.

The city board also voted to establish a deposit for households and businesses tying into the city’s sewer system, but not on other city services.

Beauman said after the city laid sewer lines two years ago to connect with River Region Medical Center on U.S. 61 North, which is outside the municipal limits, others in the area also tied into the system. Many of those are on separate water systems from the city and will be charged deposit based on water usage.

In other matters the city board:

Entered into a contract with Allen & Hoshall Limited of Hernando, Miss., for engineering services for the construction of six new water wells.

Approved a letter to Flagstar Construction Inc., of Bandon concerning final payment for the Jackson Street Community Center.

Approved the claims docket.

The city board will meet again at 10 a.m. Oct. 7 at City Hall Annex.