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Carbonear Deputy Mayor says garbage collection delays ‘still a great big issue’

By Mark Squibb

For the last couple of weeks, residents in Carbonear have been putting their garbage out without knowing for sure it would be collected.

The first delays came on December 22. Garbage that was supposed to be collected that day was postponed until December 27. From then on, new delays and postponements in collections were announced almost daily. In several incidents, residents put their garbage out on the newly appointed collection days only to have to bring it back inside because no one collected it. Those residents were later asked to bring their garbage out to the curb once again on newly scheduled collection days.

The Town issued a public apology last Friday, assuring residents that council and staff were continuing to communicate with the Eastern Regional Service Board (ERSB) regarding the issues.

During this week’s public meeting, which ran about 10 minutes, Deputy Mayor Sam Slade allowed the issue has been “near, dear, and important to the people of Carbonear” over the last few weeks.

 “The public works committee had a meeting with Eastern Waste Management that lasted three-and-a-half hours last week, and I do apologise to the people of Carbonear because we put information out there that we thought we had it resolved, and garbage collection in Carbonear was going to continue on at an equal pace, and the number of bags and everything was doubled to 12, and the recycling was supposed to be picked up, and that never happened,” Slade said.

Slade said in his view council owes the people of Carbonear another apology.

“Having said that, there are ongoing meetings, as we move forward, on the garbage issue, because apparently it’s still a great big issue,” said Slade. “It’s just simply not good enough for our residents to have to face what we’re facing here in Carbonear, and I’d like to assure the people that there will be meetings ongoing with Eastern Waste Management until we get it all clarified.”

ERSB spokesman Will Hilliard said the delays were caused by challenges associated with the Christmas season, and residents can expect things to get on track shortly.

“It’s business as usual,” said Hilliard. “Christmas, and this time of year is, I wouldn’t say difficult, but a bit of a challenging time for collection, not just for us but for any service provider, just by nature of the holidays and the closure of the Robin Hood Bay landfill over December 25 and 26, and just juggling schedules. Other than that, it’s business as usual.”

Hilliard said missed collections are taken care of as quickly as possible, and the last of the missed collections from last week were to be done Wednesday morning this week.

If your garbage goes uncollected, Hilliard said, its better to reach out to the ERSB directly rather than post about it on social media.

“Inquires about collection, that e-mail, or that phone call, goes directly to operations for response,” said Hilliard. “And we’re very good at responding and resolving the situation.”

Hillard added that despite initial reports by some media outlets, the ERSB had no control over a temporary dump in Freshwater where garbage from Victoria was being stowed for a while. Victoria contracts out its own garbage collection, said Hilliard and the ERSB also does not handle garbage collection in Freshwater.

“Regarding Carbonear it’s business as usual,” reiterated Hilliard. “Collections are getting done. This time of year is a busy time. It’s the nature of the service industry that sometimes schedules are off, and our job is to get them back on schedule.”

The ERSB is an independent agency created by the provincial government some years ago to oversee the collection of garbage on most of the Avalon peninsula. It has approximately 24,000 customers.

“Since the ERSB has come into effect, all the unregulated dumpsites which were all over the region have been shut down and waste recovery facilities were opened,” said Hilliard. “All the waste on the Avalon goes right to Robin Hood Bay. There’s no more dumping, no more burning in the backyard, no more community rodent problems, because of that. So, a lot of progress has been made.”

One thought on “Carbonear Deputy Mayor says garbage collection delays ‘still a great big issue’

  • Ruby Spracklin

    Mr. Hillard you are very mistaken that a lot of progress has been made. Here in Carbonear I personally know of people burning garbage in their backyards. There is dumping in the wrong places and there is a rodent problem here in the town. So you really are not in the know about the situation in Carbonear. Personally my garbage has not been collected by the garbage man sinc January 17th – when the guy only took 1 out of 5 garbage bags. My garbage box is about 2 feet from the garbage truck when he stops and is shovelled out for the garbage truck. So now – what is your answer to this situation. I am not the only person in Carbonear that their garbage has not been collected for 3-4-5 weeks. So if this is your responsibility please take care of the situation with garbage collections here in this town as everything seems to fall on deaf ears.


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