PBS retains Amherst garbage contract

Darrell Cole
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Could save up to $90,000 over 5.5 years

AMHERST – Amherst is sticking with PBS Waste Services for the collection of garbage and recyclables.

The town awarded the five-and-a-half year tender during a special council meeting on Wednesday.

PBS, a division of Miller Waste, has the present contract that expires in September. Its alternative bid of $1,344,609 was selected over Fero, which did not submit an alternative bid but submitted bids on two other options.

“This is a good contract. In this case, recycling will be picked up one week and compost and residual waste will be picked up the following week,” Amherst CAO Greg Herrett said following the meeting.

What is different between this contract and the existing one is that all material will be picked up over a four-day period instead of five, meaning there will be an adjustment in the collection schedule.

Coun. George Baker said the contract is good in that it could save taxpayers up to $90,000 over the life of the deal.

However, due to the timing of the award, staff are suggesting the four-day pickup not begin until Jan. 7, 2013 to provide sufficient time for customer education and communication.

In presenting the recommendation, Jason MacDonald, the town’s director of planning, said companies were asked to submit two bids – one for the existing system and one for pickup of all materials one week with no pickup the second week. They were also asked for alternate bid designed by the proponent.

The proposals were evaluated on a pre-determined evaluation matrix with PBS getting a grade of 84 out of 100 and Fero’s bid getting 71 out of 100.

Back in March, the town issued a request for proposals asking garbage companies to suggest how to best collect solid waste.

Amherst provides three-stream curbside collection of solid waste, recyclables and compost to approximately 3,200 residences.

The town is facing several changes with solid waste collection, the biggest of which is the province’s mandated reduction to 300 kilograms of garbage per person per year by 2015. Cumberland County as a whole is at 470 kilograms per person per year.

PBS’ contract will run until March 30, 2018.


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