Local waste hauler Republic Services is committed to improving services at Avon following a wave of complaints from residents in recent months.
City Sales Manager Dave Kidder told Avon City Council on September 19 that the novel coronavirus pandemic has created challenges for their operations, but that they are determined to resolve the issues.
“Like any other industry, we’ve had to deal with more than we’ve had to do in the past year and a half,” he said.
The volumes of garden waste remained high.
Kidder said labor shortages were delaying pickups, with around 110 daily residential routes in their service area and just 95 drivers.
Republic Services competes more than ever for commercial drivers, he said.
“We’re going to get it under control. It’s just going to take a little longer, ”Kidder added. “We certainly understand the frustration of the residents. No one is more frustrated than I am when we don’t do the routes.
The carrier has been hiring since February and reassured the board that it would remedy the situation.
Ward 1 Councilor Bob Butkowski asked Kidder if Republic Services would consider reversing a 3% price hike it invoked in August as part of the five-year memorandum of understanding with the city signed in 2019.
Kidder said he would look into the matter, but noted their costs have increased across the board.
“We pay more for everything we do,” Kidder added.
Board chair Brian Fischer praised Republic for the improvements in communicating with residents about changes and delays, and said he has improved 100 times.
The frustration dates back to a working session on August 2 following complaints from several municipalities in Lorain County due to the delay in collecting garden waste.