The Sebastian City Council will review the contract for Waste Management once more, making the vote earlier this month to renew under the “Universal” method null and void.
According to the Indian River County Tax Collector, the city cannot place the trash pickup costs on the tax bills until October 1, 2024. So that would mean the city would be required to bill for trash collection for 15 months and be liable to pay Waste Management every quarter for the entire collection cost, including any delinquent accounts. Currently, the trash collection company has a 17% delinquency rate.
That didn’t sit well with Councilman Ed Dodd, who asked to have the contract tabled.
“Based on our current understanding, the city will be required to cover between $500,000.00 and $700,000.00 of the payments to Waste Management during the 15-month period,” Dodd told Sebastian Daily.
He fears the city will never receive the money from delinquent accounts, which would be a significant financial liability. Liens could be placed on each property for non-payment. However, the amount is insufficient to take legal action.
In addition, the cost to foreclose to collect is greater than the past due bill. But, then, there’s the possibility of increasing taxes to pay Waste Management for outstanding debts, which the council won’t do.
At this time, the City Council directed City Manager Paul Carlisle to converse with Waste Management to see what options might be available. They will discuss it at the next scheduled meeting.
The current contract for trash pickup expires in July 2023.
Earlier this month, the City Council voted 3-2 for the “Universal” method, mandatory billing that gets added onto the customer’s tax bill.