Sunday, March 12, 2006

Ken Pellman Quoted - County of Los Angeles Switching to Franchise System For Trash Collection
By Shirley Hsu - Staff Writer
San Gabriel Valley Tribune

>>ROWLAND HEIGHTS - A proposed trash franchise system for Los Angeles County's unincorporated areas has some residents worried about higher rates and limited choices.<<

In reality, what we've seen in the "free market" system is that residents in unincorporated areas are paying more for the same or fewer services than their neighbors in incorporated cities mere blocks away, because the city is negotiating in bulk rather than family by family, and expecially in more remote areas, smaller waste hauling firms are being bought up so that only one company serves an area.

>>"We've left it up to the free market, but it hasn't worked out in a free-market way. We've seen monopolies. ... What we're trying to do is switch over to a system much like many cities have," said Ken Pellman, spokesman for the county's Department of Public Works.

"It's better for us to negotiate as representatives of the public," he said. "We want to make sure residents in unincorporated areas are getting services and rates that are competitive."

Under the proposed system, the county can require that the haulers they contract with separate recyclables from trash, Pellman said.
Pellman said he doesn't know how rates would change because the county has not yet put out a request for bids.<<

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