Paradise Valley looks to address resident trash service concerns

Paradise Valley Town Hall is at 6401 E. Lincoln Drive in the Town of Paradise Valley. (File photo)

Paradise Valley Town Hall is at 6401 E. Lincoln Drive in the Town of Paradise Valley. (File photo)

It appears Paradise Valley Town Council is gearing up for an examination of how rubbish — and possibly recyclables — are handled for local residents as concerns about multiple trash collectors have reached a noticeable pitch.

Members of the local governing board agree the issues surrounding trash collection are something long overdue to be addressed.

Paradise Valley Town Council Thursday, Jan. 28 held a work study discussion on quality of life issues to help town staff better understand how elected leaders want to address certain items of interest.

“We had put together a number of initiatives that we have called ‘quality of life’ issues to define the scope or the desired outcomes,” Paradise Valley Town Manager Kevin Burke told town council.

Among the issues discussed: Trash collection, short-term rentals and the possibility of melding the established water commission into a hybrid sustainability committee.

“The problem is the issue of noise,” Mr. Burke said of the primary issues surrounding local trash haulers.

The Town of Paradise Valley has a free-market system offering residents the ability to choose their own trash hauler. Trash outfits providing service include Area Disposal, Greenline Waste, Republic Services and Waste Management.

“We are seeing trash haulers every day of the week,” said Mr. Burke. Of concern is the “safety of trucks vs. pedestrians” because of so many “large vehicles on arterial roads.”

Collection containers may be placed at the curb the night before collection day, and must be removed from the street and stored in a screened area by the end of the collection day, according to the town’s website.

Michael Collins

Michael Collins

“Trash seems to be something that has been discussed and reviewed for a number of years and several different solutions have been presented over the last 10 to 15 years,” said Paradise Valley Mayor Michael Collins at the work session discussion.

Mayor Collins says he has been in discussions with Fountain Hills Mayor Linda Kavanagh on solutions to similar issues regarding trash haulers within town limits.

According to published news reports, a divided Fountain Hills Town Council voted in 2010 to switch to a single hauler for residential trash pickup on a five-year contract basis. It appears Republic Services provides that exclusive service in the Town of Fountain Hills.

“The results in Fountain Hills, from her (Mayor Kavanagh) perspective have been, in terms of cost, great,” Mayor Collins said of his discussions. “There are all kinds of models used by municipalities to deal with this.”

Newly appointed Paradise Valley Vice Mayor David Sherf says  the issue of trash collection in town is a major concern.

“The wear and tear on the streets is significant and I think Mr. Shano (the public works director) can attest to that,” he said. “I think this issue is a challenge this town council can take on.”

Paradise Valley Councilman Jerry Bien-Willner says he wants to ensure residents know the town is not looking to get into the sanitation business.

“I definitely think it is worth exploring,” he said. “Where we would go from there? Who knows, but this is something worth exploring. I don’t think anyone is talking about internalizing this service. No one is looking at creating a sanitation department in town.”

Northeast Valley Managing Editor Terrance Thornton can be contacted at tthornton@newszap.com

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