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Big O gets first Union Township trash contract

HEBRON – Big “O” Refuse won unanimous approval Monday night as Union Township’s exclusive residential trash hauler. trash hauling provider. The three-year contract begins July 1.

“They were the cheapest on actual refuse pick-up,” said Trustee President John Slater Tuesday. Big “O” bid slightly higher recycling fees than its closest competitor, J & J Refuse of Dover, Ohio, but Slater said not many residents – as low as 10 percent– actually want curb pick-up service for recyclables, so it made more sense to select Big “O.” Also, Slater said Big “O” already has accounts in the township and is familiar with its roads, whereby the closest route J & J Refuse has is in Muskingum County.

Slater said the contract does not include a fuel surcharge and fees will be as follows:

Big “O” Refuse’s bid was $12.45 per month per household, $11.20 for seniors (65 and older), $5.75 for recycling, $5.15 recycling for seniors, and $2.25 to rent a container.

For comparison, J & J Refuse came in second with $13.04 per month per household, $11.73 for seniors, $4.30 for recycling, $3.87 recycling for seniors, and $2 to rent a container.

Waste Management currently serves most residents at a cost of nearly $27 a month not including recycling.

Big “O” Vice President John Peckskamp said his company is mailing letters to all township residents explaining how to sign up for service. Residents may visit to register online at any time or call (740) 345-2086 with questions. Otherwise, he said the mailer will provide forms to fax or email. Peckskamp said Thursday, July 1 is the first day Big “O” will begin its Union Township collection. It will collect each following Thursday.

In other township news:

• The trustees were not impressed with the Hebron Village Council’s counter proposal to the trustees’ proposed fire contract with the Hebron Fire Department. Negotiations for a 2010 contract have been going on for months without resolution.

“I’m not sure how I feel about this. I’m not sure they really want us,” said Trustee Rick Black.

Slater said he’s certain Hebron wants to continue negotiations, but he wasn’t ready to accept the counter proposal, either. “My advisement is to ponder on this,” he said.

Black said he understood the trustees’ proposal had some support on council and he was shocked when the council unanimously rejected it.

Slater said Tuesday that none of the trustees could attend the Hebron Village Council meeting where the counter proposal was discussed and trustees couldn’t directly participate. He wants to wait to approve anything until trustees can negotiate with the council directly.

Currently, the township pays 60 percent of the fire department’s operating expenses. The trustees proposed to pay 55 percent of the department’s operations. Black said paying 60 percent forces the township to dip into its general fund to pay the Granville Township Fire Department the $80,000 per year it charges to cover the portion of the township north of the CSX railroad.

There’s also disagreement over EMS billing revenue. Trustees want 60 percent of all EMS billing revenue based on the premise that they pay 60 percent of the department’s operational expenses.

But their latest proposal has the township taking over EMS billing in the unincorporated areas which would give trustees 100 percent of that revenue – the same 100 percent they mutually agreed to for 2009 and Hebron offered for this year. Hebron wanted both parties to set aside all EMS billing revenue for capital improvements, but has dropped that issue.

Now the only difference between Hebron’s offer of 100 percent and the township’s do-it-ourselves 100 percent is Hebron’s administrative fee less any extra costs the township incurs doing its own billing. Hebron proposed to cut its fee from 6.5 percent to 3 percent in their counteroffer.

However, Slater said Tuesday that he’d still like to see correlation between the 60 percent the township pays for operational expenses and the 60 percent of EMS billing revenue he would like for the township to receive.

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