TOWNSEND — After much discussion, with a day to spare and a motion that included four additional points, Townsend might have a trash-hauling contract for fiscal 2016. As a result, weekly recycling pick-up begins the week following July 4.
The new contract is lower than the present year’s contract and offers additional services. It comes in at $619,000 for the year. The fiscal 2015 budget was $629,000.
“We put a lot of time into this,” said Board of Health Chairman Jim Le’Cuyer during a joint meeting with the Board of Selectmen on Monday. The bid from Greenville, N.H.-based G.W. Shaw & Son, the current hauler, was the only one that was not out of the water, he said.
The new, three-year contract with Shaw includes weekly, single-stream recycling collection, Le’Cuyer said.
The contract has other changes, said Health Administrator Carla Walter. Shaw will haul metals, bulky plastics and trash from the recycling center, up to $6,000 of services each year.
Some town-owned trash receptacles, such as the one at Memorial Hall, will be switched out with smaller options, such as toters, she said.
The new contract bills at a flat rate for transportation and tipping fees, a fee based on tonnage of trash. As a result, the cost for overflow bags will increase from $2 to $3 next year, Walter said. The extra dollar will go to Shaw’s to cover those fees.
The additional cost of the bags will stimulate people to recycle rather than throw more trash away, Le’Cuyer said. “They’ve gone above and beyond for single-stream recycling,” he said.
Nevertheless, Town Administrator Andy Sheehan, selectmen and other members of the Board of Health expressed concerns.
The contract on the table did not include the wording on certifications that was in there on Friday, said Sheehan.
“It needs to be put in there,” he said.
The final contract has not been reviewed by town counsel, he said. It does not reflect the request for proposals that was put out.
“So much in the RFP was unnecessary,” Le’Cuyer said, that it was taken out. Then, he said, town counsel wanted it put back in, so it was put back in.
“My understanding is that Shaw’s has taken over the edits on it,” Sheehan said.
Selectmen Chairman Colin McNabb said he wanted town counsel to look at the document.
Selectman Carolyn Smart suggested amending the motion to approve the contract contingent on adding the certification wording and town counsel’s review and approval and then signing it out of session.
The Board of Health approved the motion, 3-1, with Nancy Rapoza opposed. The group had already uncovered one thing that was missed in the contract, she said.
Selectmen approved the motion unanimously with one further addition: The contract is to be reviewed after one year.
“It’s definitely not the standard contract. It’s prudent to review it for next year,” and look at including toters, Walter said.
Tipping fees have been decreasing monthly, she said.
The contract was meant to be good only for one year, until the Board of Health can get some numbers to review, Le’Cuyer said.
The contract, as approved, increases to $636,290 for the second year and $654,884 for the third.
At least two residents attended the Board of Health meeting believing that a discussion about proposed fees at the recycling center was on the agenda. An agenda marked “revised” on the outside bulletin board did not include the topic.
At the beginning of the meeting, Le’Cuyer said recycling-center fees would not be discussed. The meeting was a special session with selectmen just for the trash contract.
“We didn’t have a meeting last week. Jeez,” said Jerry Copeland, who volunteers at the center. “You keep canceling and canceling and canceling.”
This was the third straight meeting where the board did not discuss the fees, he said.
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