The Town of Qualicum Beach is mulling whether or not to outsource garbage collection services. — J.R. Rardon photo

Qualicum Beach council debates outsourcing garbage pickup

Vote on garbage collection system deferred

Qualicum Beach town council has decided to defer deliberations on whether or not to outsource garbage collection services to a future meeting.

In a report on solid waste management services garbage collection process during its Nov. 15 committee of the whole meeting, Vancouver Island University MBA intern Jennifer Enahoro shared research that showed residents of Qualicum Beach were paying more than other residents in the region, including in the City of Parksville.

John Marsh, town finance director, said that was a statistic that stuck out to him when he was reading and reviewing the report.

When Marsh broke down the numbers to single out garbage collection, he said, he found that in a two-week period a garbage truck goes by Qualicum Beach homes three times, while a private-sector company goes by twice and collects two strains of solid waste each time.

Marsh said that, in Qualicum Beach, that equals 26 more trips to each home, which in turn costs additional money. He said the garbage component costs residents in other parts of the Parksville Qualicum Beach region about $40 while Qualicum Beach residents are paying 50 per cent more at about $60.

Staff recommendations to council were to provide commercial garbage collection services, establish a commercial garbage user fee system to cover costs and to negotiate with the Regional District of Nanaimo to contract out single-family residential garbage collection services.

The report states outsourcing the residential garbage collection could decrease expenditures on wages, equipment and fuel.

Marsh said those workers could potentially be moved to other departments such as public works or parks. He said there is a shortage of outdoor workers within town staff, adding those employees currently working with garbage collection could be moved elsewhere.

Coun. Neil Horner asked if there would be savings on wages if those employees are only moved to another position.

Marsh said if those garbage workers aren’t moved, it would mean the town would need to hire additional staff for the outside crew.

One resident, Wendy Maurer, got up to speak at the meeting. She said she would be willing to continue to pay the additional money and have the town continue garbage collection.

“For me as a resident, I believe I would rather spend the money and have the trucks necessary for the Town of Qualicum Beach to continue with residential pickup,” said Maurer, adding she’s willing to pay for the “luxury” in her taxes.

For story tips, email: lauren.collins@pqbnews.com

Just Posted

Joint effort helps extinguish shop fire in Coombs

Firefighters quickly contain blaze that spread to nearby trees

Island farmers concerned with Agricultural Land Reserve changes

Dozens voice concerns at special meeting in Nanoose Bay

Parksville resort fire caused by flammable gas used to extract oil from cannabis

Investigators detail reasons for explosion and blaze that destroyed building

Former TOSH director: ‘I will miss that challenge’

Corinne James looks back fondly on memories made at art centre

Suspect arrested following gunpoint robbery in Qualicum Beach

Stop and Shop Grocery was robbed June 5; man now in custody

VIDEO: Trans Mountain expansion project gets green light, again

Prime Minister Justin Trudeau announced the decision in Ottawa on Tuesday afternoon

Man to be sentenced for sexual abuse of young girl in Nanaimo

Stephen Mark Castleden also sentenced for child pornography-related charges

VIDEO: Firefighters stop blaze from spreading after BMW crashes at Saratoga Speedway

Victoria-based businessmen were ‘corner training’ on Father’s Day when incident took place

Two men arrested for breaking into vehicles in Port Alberni

RCMP still searching for property owners

MPs hear retired B.C. nurse’s petition to change compensation for fatal medical errors

Teri McGrath wants provinces to implement no-fault system for medical errors

Horgan says he’ll still defend B.C. coast after second Trans Mountain approval

Meanwhile, one B.C. First Nation has announced plans for a legal challenge

Demonstrators on either side of Trans Mountain debate clash in Vancouver

Crowd heard from member of Indigenous-led coalition that hopes to buy 51% of expansion project

Grieving B.C. mom hopes Facebook message leads to new investigation into son’s Surrey homicide

Criminal Justice Branch didn’t lay charges, concluding no substantial likelihood of murder or manslaughter conviction

Ginger Goodwin’s Cumberland cemetery grave desecrated

Just days before the Miners Memorial weekend, Ginger Goodwin’s grave has been… Continue reading

Most Read