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Examiner
  • Independence again denies man’s bid for trash service

  • Once again, Bill Wagner has asked the city of Independence for a trash collection services license.

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  • Once again, Bill Wagner has asked the city of Independence for a trash collection services license.
    And once again, the City Council has voted no.
    Council members, for the second time in a year, unanimously voted against Wagner’s application to provide trash service in Independence. That vote took place Monday night and followed the recommendation of both the Citizen Advisory Committee on Solid Waste Management and city staff to deny the license.
    Wagner had previously provided trash service in Independence, but in 2000, the city received complaints from Wagner’s customers about their trash not being picked up for several consecutive weeks.
    The most recent proposal called for one trash collection truck with plans to add another in the future, all while serving 2,000 Independence customers and others in adjacent cities. Wagner had proposed charging $15 a month for residential customers and $13 a month for customers 65 years and older.
    “People have a right to choose who they hire to haul their trash away,” Wagner told council members prior to their vote. “We want fewer trucks on city streets – I’ll pick up recyclables at the same time I pick up trash going to the landfill, just different compartments on the same truck.”
    According to city staff, Wagner’s application met City Code requirements, although sufficient need does not exist for another trash hauler in Independence.
    The city now has seven licensed businesses that provide weekly trash collection, totaling 92 licensed trucks. Staff say that the existing number of licensed trash vehicles exceeds the city’s minimum service standard by 1.42 times.
    “We don’t think it’s in the best interest of the community,” At-Large Council Member Lucy Young said. “I don’t think it’s in the best interest of the citizens to have (Wagner) as a licensed hauler. I think we have enough, as what is recommended by our advisory committee.”
    District 3 Council Member Myron Paris thanked Wagner for his desire to serve citizens and to save them money. However, Paris said, he is concerned because he’s received calls about the overabundance of existing trash trucks on city streets.
    “We have sufficient haulers,” Paris said. “There is enough damage done to the streets.”

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