Home trash service rates on rise in Mahoning, Shenango valleys
Costs have skyrocketed for most services across the board (all impacting your wallet) and now, even getting rid of your trash is going to cost you even more.
Home waste collection service rates have more than doubled for some residents of the Mahoning and Shenango valleys recently.
Robert Graham who lives in Mercer Borough in Mercer County told 21 News that trash pick-up is mandated by the borough, and all residents must pay for the contracted service.
Graham was recently notified his waste removal rates were increasing by 122 percent, from $50 to $111 for 3 months of service.
"They, at the council meeting, said there were no other bids put in my anyone else," Graham explained. "You got to have garbage service."
The reasons for the cost increases are similar to other service rate hikes, which include increased costs for gasoline and equipment price increases for the hauling companies.
Jerry Bowser, General Manager for Tri-County Industries of Grove City, Pa., told 21 News that his company is renewing contracts with communities from 5-to-7 years ago, and that the waster hauler was locked into the lower rates until the contracts expired. Bowser said costs have significantly increased for Tri-County, and unfortunately, need to be adjusted to help cover some of the cost increases the company has endured, including higher prices for new trucks and parts for the existing fleet.
Bowser said that labor costs have also significantly risen, as there are not enough people applying for open positions within the company.
Tri-County Industries was the only company to even bid for the contract in Mercer County and for the city of Sharon.
A post on the City of Sharon's Facebook page stated "As of Feb. 1, the waste pickup rates for the City of Sharon will be going up – with quarterly amount due doubling in price" after only one company placed a bid for the waste hauling contracting.
The post went on to say "To provide transparency to our residents about why this occurred – as well as shut down disinformation being relayed - here are the accurate details of the bidding process and the situation that the City is dealing with. The city's five-year refuse contract was scheduled to be up February 2023."
The post said that the city reached out to several other waste-hauling companies to join in the bidding process, but none did.
Mike Aey, General Manager for Ohio Valley Waste which services Mahoning and Columbiana counties, said that rates have also increased for their customers as well, averaging between to $5 to $10 per month, which varies by location and distances needed to be driven.
"The bulk of our business runs off of three necessities," Aey explained. "It's trucks, it's people and it's fuel."
Aey said the rate increases for Ohio Valley Waste including new truck costs, repairs and parts cost for truck has risen, along with labor and healthcare increases.
Aey said fuel increases and labor shortages have also added to the need to raise rates.
"I'm talking the cost to purchase a new truck," Aey explained. "With diesel trucks that are averaging 5-8 miles a gallon, it really adds up."
An ongoing cost battle Aey said won't go down anytime soon.
"I don't see the cost of our equipment coming down," Aey added. "We're going to have issues trying to get employees for some time."