The Flint City Council will consider a contract extension for Priority Waste again at a special meeting tonight at 6:30 p.m.
The City of Flint is currently paying less for waste hauling than surrounding communities and the City could pay even less than other communities with the opportunity to freeze rates for five years.
A 3% yearly increase in fees is standard in the waste services industry, and most municipalities cannot avoid this. The City of Flint has an unprecedented opportunity to freeze service fees for five years.
“This is an easy choice,” Flint Mayor Sheldon Neeley said. “Either secure city-owned recycling and trash carts for all Flint households, along with a rate freeze for five years, or don’t. Rejecting this deal will mean an immediate return to the normal 3% yearly increase in waste-hauling contracts, and we will be forced to return the $4 million in grant funds, which will be reallocated to other communities who are willing to comply with the grant requirements. This is a great deal for Flint residents and that is why we are championing this proposal.”
“This is one of the best deals I have seen in 40 years of municipal finance experience,” Flint CFO Phillip Moore said. “Based on prices in other communities, the City of Flint would be extremely unlikely to get a lower price by putting this out to bid.”
The City of Flint currently pays 16.45 per household, per month for waste hauling. This is comparable to or less than most neighboring communities:
• Burton $14.26 – Manual trash, bin recycling, and compost, 10,105 units
• Davison $17.30 – Carted trash and recycling, plus compost service, 2,371 units
• Fenton Twp. $17.80 – Carted trash and recycling, plus compost service, 6,097 units
• Flushing $19.15 – Carted trash and recycling, plus compost service, 3,292 units
• Grand Blanc $17.50 – Carted trash and recycling, plus compost service, 2,197 units
• Macomb Twp. $16.90 – Manual trash, bin recycling, 32,000 units
• Montrose $16.98 – Carted trash and recycling, plus compost service, 700 units
• Mt. Morris $16.79 – Carted trash and recycling, 1,100 units
While these examples reflect differences in service options, Flint residents’ service is among the most robust, including bulk pickup and weekly recycling and compost pickup.
The City of Flint’s intention is to not raise assessment fees for residents. The City of Flint projects that in future years, it will generate additional revenue through improved income tax collection enforcement in partnership with the State of Michigan.
During the life of the proposed contract extension with Priority Waste, the general fund will be able to supplement the trash fund so that assessment fees will not be increased. This aligns with an important strategic budget priority to reduce blight in the City of Flint.
The City of Flint has a contract with Priority Waste that runs through next Fall 2024, with two optional 1-year extensions. The current contract was secured through a competitive bid process. The City of Flint has followed all procurement rules and regulations.
The grant requirements for the recycling cart program require that the City of Flint has a contract in place immediately with a waste hauler that can transition to a carted waste collection system.