Palm Coast Waste Collection Sparks Controversy

Residents in Palm Coast, Florida have been left without recycling bins after Waste Pro USA, the company responsible for the waste disposal, took them away due to an ongoing legal dispute with the city. The move has left local residents confused and struggling with what to do with their paper and plastic waste.

Joseph Binder, a resident of Palm Coast, expressed his frustration, saying, “I look at what I have, especially paper and plastic, and I’m saying, ‘Where is it all gonna go?’” Binder, an avid recycler, had been putting his recycling bin out weekly until Waste Pro USA removed it, as well as bins from 7,000 other Palm Coast residents.

After 17 years of service, the city cut ties with Waste Pro USA, and a new contract with the city’s new hauler, FCC Environmental, began on June 1. Waste Pro USA removed its branded recycling bins, which the company believes it owns, causing a disruption in the smooth transition to the new contractor. The ownership of those recycling bins belongs to the residents per the city’s contract with Waste Pro. Local officials are sympathetic to the fact that the removal of the recycling bins by the outgoing hauler caused disruption to the new contractor.

The City of Palm Coast is working diligently to acquire and provide replacement recycling bins to all affected residents as soon as possible. Brittany Kershaw, Palm Coast director of communications and marketing, stated that the city’s position is that the ownership of the recycling bins belongs to the residents, as stated in the contract. Waste Pro USA disputes this and believes that retrieving its property following the completion of services in the city is legal and appropriate.

The company posted advertisements in the local newspaper, offering to sell the bins to the city at a discounted price. Waste Pro USA officials stated that it was perplexing that the city didn’t take any steps to obtain new bins. Residents whose bins were taken can fill out a request on the city’s customer service portal to get a replacement bin. However, it could take up to three weeks to get those new bins, according to city officials. The city also plans to charge Waste Pro $120 per bin that was picked up.

The situation with Waste Pro USA has created confusion and frustration for Palm Coast residents, who are struggling with what to do with their waste in the meantime. The city is working to resolve the issue as quickly as possible to meet the needs of its exceptional community.

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