- Police Beat
- The Forecaster
BATH — The City Council on Wednesday granted unanimous first passage to a five-year contract with Pine Tree Waste, and presented the family of longtime Councilor Bernie Wyman, who died from a stroke Jan. 29, with a city chair and proclamation in his memory.
The council is due April 3 to vote on second and final passage of the contract, which would take effect next month and run through March 2024.
City landlords asked the panel to table the matter while Bath’s Solid Waste Advisory Committee looks into expanding the number of multi-unit buildings that qualify for curbside collection of trash and recyclables. That committee meets next at City Hall at 4 p.m. Wednesday, March 20.
The contract stipulates that the city would pay $333,000 for a basic payment of services for the first year of the contract, with subsequent years adjusted depending upon the consumer price index. The change in that contract from the prior pact was not available by The Forecaster’s deadline.
The city has contracted with Pine Tree for nearly 20 years, according to City Manager Peter Owen. The prior five-year contract expired in June 2018, and Pine Tree has continued its services since then without a contract.
Pine Tree each week collects household trash that is placed in blue city pay-as-you-throw bags. The city pays for trash collection only from single-family homes and duplexes, according to cityofbath.com/curbside-collection. Apartments, bed and breakfasts, businesses, and three-family or greater homes have to arrange private trash service.
Daniel Beishline, who owns a three-unit building on Washington Street, was among those Wednesday asking the council to postpone any decisions on the contract until the solid waste panel “can have a thorough vetting of the local landlords’ issues concerning which residents qualify for city trash pickup.”
“I strongly feel the cost benefits of allowing 168 multi-unit properties to share the expense of trash removal, and also the incentive to increase the life of the (city) landfill by incentivizing recycling, have not been thoroughly addressed,” Beishline added.
The 168 units would come from allowing buildings of between three to six units to participate in curbside collection, Public Works Director Lee Leiner said.
“One of the discussion items at the committee level is, where do you draw that line,” he noted, referring to possible requests for buildings of seven or more units to also be included.
Adding 168 more properties would cause the contract amount to increase, since Pine Tree would have to make more stops, Leiner said.
The contract can be changed according to any recommendations the solid waste committee makes to the council, council Chairwoman Mari Eosco noted.
“Right now we’re paying them for last year’s contract,” Owen said. “We’ve had a good relationship with them, they’ve been willing to wait. I’m leery of (telling Pine Tree) we have to wait longer, considering we can make these changes later.”
Wednesday’s meeting opened with Eosco’s reading of a proclamation to Quinda Wyman, Bernie Wyman’s wife of 60 years, and their children. An election to fill the Ward 4 seat he filled for 24 years will be held April 2.
“Bernie was a thoughtful, kind and soft-spoken man, but he wasn’t afraid to express his opinion whenever he had something to say,” Eosco read from the proclamation. “His dry sense of humor, genuine consideration of others, steadfast loyalty to his family and love for the city of Bath will never be forgotten.
The city “has suffered a tremendous loss with the passing of this fine councilor and gentleman,” the statement concluded.
Quinda Wyman, fifth from left, smiles after a proclamation presented to her family in honor of longtime Bath City Councilor Bernie Wyman, who died Jan. 29. Council Chairwoman Mari Eosco, standing at right, read the proclamation.