- Grove City, Pennsylvania

October 11, 2013

Trash panel's 1st meeting offers agreement, questions

Next meeting Oct. 16

By Felicia A. Petro/Senior Reporter
Allied News

SLIPPERY ROCK — More volume -- of information -- is needed for bulk trash pickup in Slippery Rock, though it has been a much-discussed topic in the borough in recent months.

Ten members of the Solid Waste/Recycling Committee, formed by council, had their first meeting Thursday about reinstating bulk trash pickup in May in Slippery Rock.

Council wanted the SWRC to offer suggestions about bulk trash but members wanted more information to help them make those suggestions.

"I'd like to make an informed decision," said Matt Kovacik, a businessman on the committee. Otherwise, it will be simply "kicking up ideas to council," he added, which could prolong the process of making a decision about bulk pickup in the borough.

The spring bulk trash date was pushed ahead this year to March, which created a stir.

In the traditional May date, bulk trash - which can include large items like beds and furniture - catered to Slippery Rock University students leaving for the summer or graduating and heading off into the sunset.

Tri-County Industries told council that bulk trash pickup rate would go up this year with the May pickup, so it opted for the March pickup - which would have less volume - to maintain the current bulk trash rate. The garbage rates are paid entirely by borough citizens.

However, landlords were upset because they didn't want to be stuck with bulk trash left behind by students who didn't have the curbside pickup to turn to.

The cost to get rid of big items left behind is more than the extra $18 annual charge to return bulk trash to May, said citizen Tom McPherson, also a committee member.

"There's certain things Salvation Army and Goodwill won't take," added Tom Cooper, committee member and borough landlord.

All 10 members agreed that it would be worth the extra costs to reinstate the May pickup, keep the fall pickup - which was held yesterday - and possibly have a second spring pickup.

But first things first. Members wanted the borough to put together a packet of information for the committee that contains a number of items, such as the new 3-year garbage collection contract with Tri-County; the number of residents, landlords and tenants in the borough; if there are any borough ordinances related to trash; and if Butler County allows unlimited curbside pickup like Mercer County does.

Citizens like Charles Brochetti, a member of the borough's water authority, felt the committee also needed to find out what is done with the $3 solid waste fee on the monthly garbage bill.

That $3 multiplied by the 1,183 units in the borough equals a lot of money annually, he said. "You should be able to tell me what I'm getting for that $3." Brochetti said the borough would not be permitted to make a profit from the garbage fee.

Members also include a representative from SRU, Student Government Association President Buddy Clements; two additional members were missing from the meeting.

The committee will meet again at 7 p.m. Oct. 16 after receiving and reviewing the information packet.

Published Sept. 21, 2013, in Allied News. Pick up a copy at 201 A Erie St., Grove City.