City Council approves new franchisee
Recology for solid waste services

February 11, 2015
Santa Paula News

Santa Paula officially has a new trash hauler after the City Council agreed to transfer the franchise contract for solid-waste collection from Crown Disposal to Recology, based in Northern California.

The council voted unanimously to approve the franchise agreement - the terms remain the same - at the February 2 meeting.

Interim Public Works Director Brian Yanez told the council that staff did their “due diligence” in ensuring the new hauler will fit the bill.

“We checked their references, interviewed other cities as well as another entity,” the City of Beverly Hills, which had also contracted with Crown before it sold to Recology, a deal effective in January.

Yanez said Recology-served communities were notified, recycling programs examined, customer service gauged, safety records examined, financial standings reviewed and a survey taken to rate the company.

“We had 87 percent say that their service was above expectations and 13 percent was satisfactory,” said Yanez.

In addition, Recology purchased Crown’s equipment and will hire the existing staff, for the most part former city employees who moved to Crown when it purchased the solid waste division four years ago.

The city, said Yanez, will continue to share office space with the hauler now relocated the ground floor of the Odd Fellows Lodge on East Main Street.

“Most importantly we hope to continue a good relationship with our citizens... I shared with Mr. (Donald) Gambelin,” Recology’s business director, “how important it is to our community, the customer service,” that it is a priority.

Yanez said Crown also “Did a lot of extra things that are not in the franchise agreement,” that Recology has agreed to continue.

The company will also offer the senior discount to those residents at least 62 years old.

There is a pre-agreed to 0.07 percent increase that will kick in July 1, an increase that was delayed by Crown when they were able to extend the term of the contract.

Councilwoman Ginger Gherardi asked about rate increases and noted fees are higher in Northern California: “I don’t want them to give back to the community with one hand and take away with another... “ 

City Attorney John Cotti assured the council such fee increases are based on the Consumer Price Index.

Gambelin told the council that Recology has a February 14 target date to start operations as Recology of Ventura, although the branding will be Los  


Mayor John Procter thanked Gambelin for bringing up several instances of past Recology legal problems and Councilman Jim Tovias said Crown would be a tough community-minded act to follow.

Noting Crown’s contributions, Tovias said “The bar is set high for you, the expectations are high, we welcome you,” but matching Crown’s involvement will be a challenge.

Vice Mayor Martin Hernandez said he did his own due diligence and now, “I’m really excited to have you in town... “

City Manager Jaime Fontes noted that Crown’s retention of the city’s former wastewater treatment plant for recycling, composting and food digesting could also factor into solving the city’s chloride issues.

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