The Hillsborough Board of Commissioners has been asked to consider a 5-percent rate increase for commercial solid waste services as well as a one-year extension on the franchise agreement.
The two requests are on the agenda for the board’s regular monthly meeting on Oct. 10 in the Town Barn, 101 E. Orange St. on the Town Hall campus.
Waste Industries—which provides solid waste and recycling services to businesses, churches, nonprofits and multi-family housing communities in town through a franchise agreement negotiated by the Town of Hillsborough—made the requests on Oct. 3.
Per the agreement, the town has 60 days to respond to the rate request or the rate becomes effective. Rate adjustments are limited to no more than 10 percent per year, according to the franchise. This is the first rate adjustment that Waste Industries has sought since the current franchise agreement started in August 2009. The franchise expires July 31. Under the agreement, two one-year extensions are allowed and the town must provide notice of franchise renewal or discontinuation within 90 days of the agreement’s expiration.
Waste Industries is seeking the rate adjustment based on a 6 percent increase in the consumer price index in January and a $5 per ton increase in the tipping fees at the Orange County Landfill. Effective in July, the tipping fees increased from $52 to $57 per ton. Waste Industries indicated that it has been absorbing increased costs for some time rather than raising customer rates.
Since 2004, the town has pursued commercial solid waste franchise agreements at the request of the business community to leverage better pricing and services as a community. Each business pays Waste Industries directly, with rates based on service level and frequency. All businesses are required to use the same service provider.
The town is in the process of issuing a survey to customers on the franchise. The survey seeks feedback on customer service and asks about future service needs and the willingness to pay rate adjustments. Results should be available by the end of October. To date, the town has not received any service complaints about Waste Industries.
For more information, contact Assistant Town Manager/Public Works Director Nicole Ard by e-mail or by phone at 732-1270 Ext. 77. Or contact Public Works Supervisor Ken Hines by e-mail or by phone at 732-1270 Ext. 78.