You put your trash out for pickup and the next morning it doesn't get picked up. Who are residents going to call? Are they going to call anyone?
City Council members spent a good deal of time Thursday night talking about Creve Coeur's contract with Allied Waste, which expires next June. The hauler is proposing a 3-year extension with the city which would bring $10,000 in monthly savings in exchange for 3 percent annual increases.
City staff endorsed the renewal, as did the Recycling, Environment and Beautifation Committe, citing the monthly savings and city resident surveys which indicate overall customer satisfaction.
That opened up a rhetorical discussion among council members and members of the public about what those surveys really mean, as Ward 3 Councilman Robert Hoffman pointed out that "most of us don't call," in hopes that they get it right next week. Data provided by Allied Waste, which is who you're supposed to call if you have problems with trash service, showed seven one hundredths of a percent of complaints per pickup.
Ward 2 Councilwoman Tara Nealey pointed out that there isn't a way for the city to track individual problems in a matter of real-time, which means a better sense of customer satisfaction might not appear on an annual survey.
Resident Lynn Berry urged the city to competitively bid the contract out, since the city is relying on data from the last negotiation in 2007. She also mentioned concerns of an appearance of impropriety in the wake of controversy over
No formal action was taken on the matter, which was not scheduled for any vote at the meeting.
In other business:
- The City Council held a public hearing on the property tax rate for 2011. Resident David Caldwell repeated his call to phase out property taxes alltogether. City Administrator Mark Perkins said the amount of the tax, $50.00 on a $300,000 property only comprised 5 percent of the city's operating budget and needed to be considered in a larger picture taking into account the amount of services provided by the city compared to neighboring communities.
- Perkins also reviewed feedback from the city's r At the urging of several council members, city staff will put together draft legislation on a complaint-based no-feed ordinance and the outlines of a possible bowhunting program to thin the deer herd.
- The meeting began with a moment of silence in honor of David Murray, a former City Councilman who died last month. Murray was 86 years old. (stltoday.com/legacy.com).