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City and its garbage contractor dispute continues

Michael Williams - WRJW News

The issue of solid waste pickup in the City of Picayune came up during last night's meeting of the City Council. Contract negotiations with Coastal Environmental Services (CES), the current provider of trash disposal for the city, are at a standstill over two potential financial burdens to citizens.

The council signed a bid from CES for $18.84 per household on August 15th. Coastal then sent a revised contract containing 2 new stipulations. One was to remove the 5% cap on the CPI or consumer price index. The CPI has increased significantly due to inflation. Gus Bordelon, president of Coastal Environmental Services says that the city should accept the CPI increase no matter the amount due to it being out of the out of CES’ control and is set by the federal government, and those added costs cannot be absorbed by his company.

Mr. Bordelon (pictured left) also stated that the CPI could also drop, relieving the city of the extra financial burdens, but that there is just no way to know what it will be when the company would begin charging the city whatever the CPI percentage would be when CES begins charging the city an increase or decrease in September of 2023.

The second issue with the contract involves the increase in the cost of diesel fuel used to run the trucks. The original contract made no stipulations for covering these increases. Diesel fuel currently stands near $5.00 a gallon and if the city absorbs these costs, it will have to be passed on to residents.

Attorney Nick Thompson, who is working with the city on this issue, advised council to revisit the contract with CES and continue negotiations with them to try and reach a decision on these matters in hopes that both parties can find an amicable middle ground in order to keep from interrupting services.

The council agreed to sit down with CES very soon to address these issues and feel that they are very close to a resolution. Council also agreed to pay CES the original contract rate of $18.84 per household for last month and during future contract negotiations.



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