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Aldermen back new trash plan, fees

Evanston aldermen Monday tentatively voted to move forward with plans to raise fees for refuse and yard waste services.

They also agreed to seek requests for proposals from waste hauling companies to take over trash pickup work from city crews. Under the staff proposal the city crews would switch to handling recycling pickups now performed by a contractor.

Evanston aldermen Monday tentatively voted to move forward with plans to raise fees for refuse and yard waste services.

They also agreed to seek requests for proposals from waste hauling companies to take over trash pickup work from city crews. Under the staff proposal the city crews would switch to handling recycling pickups now performed by a contractor.

Final action on the plans wouldn’t come until after the council has received bids from contractors and has a more precise idea of how much the switch would save.

City staff has estimated the change in who does what work would save more than $500,000 a year.

The decision came at an unusual meeting of the Administration and Public Works Committee with all nine aldermen present rather than just the five who are members of the committee.

Votes to seek the request for proposals and to plan to start charging for yard waste services appeared to be unanimous.

But when it came to action on raising rates for garbage pickup, committee chair Ann Rainey, 8th Ward, asked that only the A&PW members vote. That vote split 3-2 in favor, with Rainey and Alderman Lionel Jean-Baptiste, 2nd Ward, voting no.

The yard waste rates would be $25 a year for a yard waste cart or $1.75 per bag for stickers for yard waste bags. City staff estimate that program would raise $1 million.

The proposed change in garbage pickup rates would be $10.95 a month for a 95-gallon cart, the current size, or $6.95 for a smaller 65-gallon cart.  $6.95 is the current monthly rate for garbage pickup.

The rate for a second garbage cart would rise from $2.50 to $6.95 per month.

Condo owners now served with dumpsters by a private contractor would continue to pay the $6.95 rate.

Staff anticipates the changes in garbage pickup rates would raise an additional $500,000 in revenue.

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