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Talkin' trash: Village, Richfield sign waste hauler agreement



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July 07, 2010 - The village council was full of trash talk, June 28, when councilmembers unanimously approved a new waste removal contract with Richfield Equities.

The village collected bids for waste hauling services back in March, and Richfield's estimates for $12,300 in the first year came in around $5,000 cheaper than bids from Allied Republic Waste and Waste Management. Richfield's prices will rise around $300 per year for the four-year contract, keeping them proportionally lower than other bidders.

Village Manager Paul Zelenak said Richfield will offer "new and exciting" services for the village, like the Rewards for Recycling program and electronic waste (e-waste) pickup.

"We are one of the few communities who are offering things," he said.

Richfield has actually been Lake Orion's waste hauler since the company purchased Waste Away. It will continue to provide usual trash and recycling services along with some new ones, like Trash It.

Trash It, a company in partnership with Richfield, will come to residents' homes to pick up large items, like refrigerators, and recycle or refurbish and donate them. Pickup is for a fee, but residents can then write-off the value of the appliance for tax purposes. Pickup is done by appointment.

"It seems very small, but one person sees someone recycling a refrigerator and they recycle an air conditioner and so on and so forth, and it keeps as much as possible," said Richfield representative Dan Garman. Fees for pickup run around $5 to $10 per item.

Garman says Richfield "finds themselves to be a very green company," because the company rehabilitated and now uses two landfills that didn't previously meet state code, and because of its recycling partnerships and incentive programs.

The village and Richfield will also develop an e-waste pickup program for village residents, which will bring a lot of attention to the village said Garman.

"I think this is the first one I've seen where electronic (pickup) will be available for every resident in the community," he said.

Richfield will also offer door pickup for house and yard waste instead of curb pickup for 47 residents with difficulty getting trash and recycling to the curb, for no additional charge, said Garman.

All residents will have the opportunity to go to the landfill whenever needed to take a truckload of trash or compost to the landfill in Davison.

"I think it's nice because if you clean the garage on a Friday and you want to get rid of it right now, you can go to the landfill to take it. It's free for any resident in the Village of Lake Orion," he said.

Richfield and the village will communicate all waste hauling details with village residents via mailings and Websites, according to officials.

Reporter, Lake Orion Review
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