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Garbage ordinance isn’t ready for the curb

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Committee hopes to be ready for a first reading in May

By Brad Bowman

Although Mayor Tom Hardesty and City Attorney Steve Gregory had believed the contentious curbside garbage and recycling franchise ordinance would be ready for the April 17 meeting of the Shelbyville City Council, it will not be discussed this week.

In fact, the council will not meet due to lack of an agenda; instead opting to cancel Thursday’s regularly scheduled meeting.

Both Hardesty and Gregory said that they want more time to make sure the ordinance is right.

“I will be meeting with the committee that oversees garbage and with the mayor, and we are not going to rush it,” said Shelbyville City Attorney Steve Gregory. “We’ve done a lot of comparisons of other garbage ordinances, and we want to look once a company provides the proper bid what the specs are and set up the technicalities that would apply to franchise.”

The technicalities in the ordinance include the exclusivity of a franchise agreement, meaning residents could contract no other haulers. He also noted that they intended to continue to look at specific features they’d like to see haulers offer, and what costs those would entail.

“In the bid process, we would look at who has the best rate, recycling and other provisions like backdoor or non-curbside service for senior citizens. We decided we (the committee made up of Gregory, Mayor Tom Hardesty and council members Mike Zoeller and Frank Page) would meet again and look over some issues.”

Hardesty said the committee’s goal is to have a first reading on the ordinance next month.

“We are just not ready yet, and we are looking at ordinances in other communities —making sure we do it right the first time and don’t have to redo an ordinance,” he said. “We hope to have a first reading in May — that is the committee’s goal.”

The committee, he said, would continue to discuss billing, days and hours of service and narrow down what should be included in the ordinance.

“We are wanting to offer a franchise, but not make it mandatory,” Hardesty said. “People will still have the option to haul their own trash.”

The Shelbyville City Council will next meet at 6:30 p.m. on May 1.