‘They Know They Made a Mistake’: Town Goes with City Carting for New Disposal Contract

After the town turned away from its longtime recyclables hauler due to difficulty with the Stamford-based company, municipal officials last week approved a new contract with the same company for disposal of brush and construction debris. At $137,400 per year, City Carting came back with the lowest bid for the work because they “want back in,” according to New Canaan Department of Public Works Assistant Superintendent of Solid Waste Don Smith. “They know they made a mistake,” Smith told members of the Board of Selectmen at their June 23 meeting, held via videoconference. 

“It’s the management that is the problem but actually the people that I deal with it’s not their fault it’s the ones above them that have caused major issues so they are trying to get back into the good side of things” Smith said. He added, “The lower guys are trying to make up for what the people up top have done, basically, just by ignoring us.”

He referred to an issue that surfaced last year, where town officials said New Canaan was paying $85 per ton on recyclables while Wilton was paying $65 per ton for similar services. Smith said in January that he’d been unable to reach City Carting to get an explanation for the discrepancy, and in April the town turned to a Danbury-based hauler.

Officials: Trash-Collecting Company Non-Responsive To Inquiries Regarding High Rates

Town officials said Tuesday that they’ve been unable to reach a Stamford-based garbage and recycling collection company for a reason why New Canaan is paying about 30% more than neighboring Wilton for a similar service, and will seek a new contractor. 

The town pays City Carting about $85 per ton for recycling services, compared to Wilton’s rate of $65 per ton, according to Department of Public Works Assistant Superintendent of Solid Waste Don Smith. 

“I can’t get ahold of nobody,” Smith told the Board of Selectmen when asked whether City Carting had justified the $20 difference. “I have sent emails, phone calls and text messages and nobody has gotten back to me since our last time we had this [discussion] in November.”

The comments can as the Board approved payment of about $64,000 to City Carting for invoices racked up the past three months. The town since July 1 has been using the company without a contract. 

Smith told the selectmen during their regular meeting at Town Hall that a request for proposals will go out next week. “I’m sending it to all three major companies in the area and hopefully someone else will just respond and go after it,” Smith said. The two other companies are located in Shelton and Bridgeport, he said.