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Villa Rica To Revisit Curbside Waste Pickup Service

As Villa Rica city officials talk about the city’s 2019 budget, City Manager, Tom Barber admitted that additional changes could be in store for the city’s solid waste curbside pick-up service.

All utility customers pay a $7.50 fee for the pick-up service, which keeps everything from limbs and lawn clippings, small household items and furniture, and metal and miscellaneous items from cluttering roadsides and woods. The new service in 2018 was promoted as a way to encourage customers to help keep the City of Gold clean. However, city officials are finding the plan has its good and its bad, according to Barber.

“The amount of solid waste that we are picking up has maybe quadrupled since we started charging for it. We have helped on the illegal dumping side because there is no reason for anybody to do that because we are picking it up. But because there is no limits, what we are seeing is rampant contractor abuse that we don’t have a way of controlling,” said Barber. “So all the landscape contractors, instead of taking what they are cutting to the landfill or the transfer station, they are just putting it on the street and we are picking it up for free and paying for it. So it is a great deal for them.”

This is making it difficult for the city to catch up with costs for the work and to break even for the service.

“There is some genius to what we are doing but I don’t think that it is sustainable,” said Barber to city council members.

The pick-up service will be discussed during budget talks during July and August.

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