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Flint mayor to call special city council meeting to consider trash contract

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By JAMES PAXSON, RACHEL MCCRARY

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    FLINT, Michigan (WNEM) — Mayor Neeley will call a special Flint City Council meeting next week to ask members to act and ensure waste collection services will continue uninterrupted in the city.

“Once again the city council failed to do their job,” Neeley said.

City Council tried to set terms for an extension for waste services during their meeting on Wednesday, June 30. A 90-day extension for $1.4 million with Republic Services was voted down by city council as their contract expired.

Neeley is working with the service provider for the residents of Flint. Republic Services has agreed to continue providing waste services for the future, so the health, safety, and welfare of residents is not jeopardized.

“Most of our day today has been just that having dialogue with them late last night, early this morning and through the day working out a good faith type of activity,” Neeley said.

The special council meeting date and time is still to be determined. The city of Flint does not have a contract to provide trash pickup to residents.

“We are thankful to Republic Services for stepping up and being willing to fill this gap, but we need a resolution to this issue. We cannot leave this critically important service to residents in limbo with no guarantees for continued service,” Neeley said. “Again, this is basic governance. We hope and pray a majority of City Council members will choose to act in the best interest of residents and our community.”

Flint City Councilwoman Eva Worthing wanted to approve the 90-day extension. She believes they needed extra time to work on a long-term contract.

She said it is hard to get anything done during the meetings.

“It’s very contentious. And argumentative every single time. Over any issue,” Worthing said.

Councilman Eric Mays said he voted down the 90-day deal because Republic was asking for an over $200,000 as a new fee to address worker shortages and out of state recruitment costs.

“I was not going to reward poor service,” Mays said.

“To allow a contract to lapse because once again witnessing a failure of some city council members to do their job. Is unacceptable,” Neeley said.

Neeley adds that city council’s idea to only approve a 30-day extension does not work for the provider and is not workable for the city because a new long-term contract for waste services is not expected until Oct. 1.

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