RED OAK - Wendy Holloway’s request is a simple one. She wants garbage hauler IESI to let her have one of its large, heavy-duty trash cans, known as a “cart.”
Since moving to her home on Springfield Circle in Red Oak in 2003, Holloway has had IESI service, at first paying for it directly and then paying for it through the city of Red Oak. No matter how she’s paid for trash service - she said she was even double-billed by the company and the city at one point - she’s never been provided one of the carts.
There’s some humor in the situation, she admits, but there’s also a sense of frustration as she’s watched the company bring carts to other people moving into the neighborhood.
She said she’s called and received different answers ranging from “they’re in the county, you’re in the city limits” to “we’ll bring you one out (it never came)” to no response at all.
“About half of the homes have IESI cans and half do not, even though the same trash truck picks up the trash,” she said, saying all she’s received is “the run around.”
The IESI carts are bigger, better and more durable than anything she can buy, Halloway said.
“In 2006, I bought four trash cans at $50 apiece,” she said. “I’ve got one left because the trash guys have torn up my other three. And the one I have has about bit the dust.”
She said she questions why IESI can’t provide her, a paying customer, with one of the carts.
IESI division manager Paul Calloway says it’s not that easy because the city of Red Oak’s contract price with the company doesn’t include providing carts. Keeping carts out of the contract makes for a lower charge and, in Red Oak, residents pay $8.45 per month for twice a week pickup.
Rural customers, on the other hand, are provided a cart for their use, but they pay $28 per month for once a week pickup, he said.
At this time, it doesn’t appear Holloway will get her cart and, in fact, the city of Red Oak has asked IESI to pick up any of the company’s carts that remain in the neighborhood, Calloway said.
He said he’s not unsympathetic to the situation, but the city’s contract doesn’t leave him an option.
“I live in Red Oak and I don’t even have a cart at my own house,” Calloway said. “I have the same Wal-Mart trash cans everyone else has.”
The city’s contract comes up again in March, with Calloway suggesting Holloway and other residents lobby their council members as to the types of services they want.
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