Trash-hauling costs rising

| 28 Sep 2011 | 02:14

    WEST MILFORD-Pick-up or take-out, if you live in West Milford, the costs keep on rising. Garbage is a growth industry. There seems to be no end in sight to the high price of hauling trash. Dumping alone will cost $200,000 more than last year. Mayor Joseph Di Donato is asking residents to be more diligent about recycling, in the wake of the soaring bills. On June 16, five-year contracts were awarded to Onyx Waste Services of Totowa, and Blue Diamond Disposal Inc. of Roxbury Township. West Milford will pay $5.7 million to Onyx for solid waste removal and another $3.5 million to Blue Diamond for curbside pick up. Both contracts are based on estimated tonnage increases over the five-year period. For example, the township will pay Onyx $78.75 per ton for an estimated 12,900 tons for the first year, totaling just over $1 million. At the end of five years, that amount will increase to $88.16 per ton for an estimated 14,500 tons of garbage, a total of close to $1.3 million. The last contract signed in 1999 went to Pen Pac at a cost of $59 per ton. Last year that cost increased to $63 because of a $4 per ton dumping charge in Pennsylvania, the final disposal destination for the town's solid waste. Pen Pac's contract expires July 31. This year the only other bidder was Waste Management, the country's largest trash hauler. Their bid was $3 per ton higher that Onyx. Blue Diamond Disposal was the lowest bidder of three companies for curbside pickup. The company has been collecting curbside since January of this year, including recycling and solid waste. Garbage grief is nothing new to this council. The huge increases come on the heels of the commercial garbage problems left behind by the former council. When the former council decided to offer trash removal services to business owners 90 businesses signed up. That number eventually skyrocketed to more than 200, and so did the garbage bills. Since January, township officials have been trying to balance the increasing number of businesses receiving service with the mounting costs to the town.