2012-10-06 / Editorials & Letters

Bowling Green Township residents should check for overcharges

Editor:

It appears that there are some problems with the exclusive trash contract imposed on township residents last year. Trustees learned at their August board meeting that at least one resident has been way overcharged.

The single bid contract was awarded to Big O Refuse in 2011 by now former Trustee Donald Watkins, then Trustee President Daniel Vanburen and Trustee Benjamin Hupp. The exclusive contract was supposed to save residents money. Community watchdog Will Kern presented a resident’s bill last month with a significant overcharge. While assisting this resident by calling Big O, I learned that if a special form was not completed customers could be billed at the rate in place before the contract was awarded. I got the impression from Big O that it’s the customer’s fault.

At this point, we don’t know how widespread the problem is. I am currently trying to review Big O billing records to determine the extent of the over-billing. This could be a violation of the contract. I am also seeking assistance from the county prosecutor’s office.

When we discussed this issue at our September board meeting I suggested that we publicize the over-billing so residents could check their bills. My suggestion was rejected, so that’s why I’m writing this letter. My thought was to notify our customers (township residents) about possible overbilling and help them get refunds if appropriate.

Bowling Green Township residential customers should be paying $11.95 per month for trash pickup. If you are paying more, you are likely due a refund. Fiscal Officer Jennie Duval does not want to be contacted about any billing problems.

If you need help, email me at Jeff@Chorpenning.com or call 740-787-1517.

Trustees did approve a resolution to seek help from the prosecutor’s office in regard to several violations of the now legal monopoly. As a resident last year, I raised quite a few contract issues with the board last year but ALL were ignored. Now as your elected trustee, I will make every effort to clean up this issue since it is now on MY watch.

Jeff Chorpenning, Trustee
Bowling Green Township

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