Pulaski County is hoping to get a bit closer to break-even on their transfer services.
It was recommended in 2013 that the county increase the price of its individual bags to more accurately reflect the prices being paid at the landfill in Buffalo, but was never followed. Currently, Pulaski County receives refuse from any location in the county.
Parties dropping off more than six bags are required to have a weight taken. Four-cents is charged per pound. For members dropping off small bags, the county simply accepts on a per bag charge, sometimes ignoring the fact that the weight limit is upwards of 30 pounds.
Recycling and Transfer Station Director Brad Bonnell says the bag drop is where the problem lies.
“Everybody likes convenience so convenience is going to cost,” says Bonnell.
The Pulaski County Commissioners are under the impression that if they are offering the service, it should at least attempt to make money when the truck is weighed at the landfill.
A per-bag price increase was recommended to better cover the costs of the truck. Previous prices were 25-cents for small bags, 50-cents for larger bags. A price structure of three levels was recommended by Bonnell.
Even with the price increases, Pulaski County says they are charging significantly less than private refuse collectors in the area. Commissioner Larry Brady says they can’t continue operating as they are.
“We got hit hard this last summer during budget time from the state with the money we receive,” says Brady. “The message clearly came to us: we have to stop what we’re doing in some areas when it’s not fiscally responsible and this is one area that’s been identified as not being fiscally responsible.”
The Commissioners recommended moving prices for small bags to 50-cents each, medium bags $1 each, and larger contractor-sized bags to $1.50 each.
The County plans to implement the changes on March 1st of this year and collect data until December where prices may once again be adjusted.