Lima council committee talks trash complaints

By Sam Shriver -

LIMA — Lima City Council’s Utilities Committee met virtually Tuesday to discuss complaints that have been voiced about the city’s trash hauler, Rumpke.

First ward Lima councilman Jamie Dixon brought the problem to the council’s attention last year after receiving numerous complaints in late November and December.

The issues his constituents have raised range from trash not picked up to leftover trash strewn about after pickup.

“I believe that as a person that pays water and sewage and utilities, we should not have these types of issues,” Dixon said. “What we need to do is make sure that the same services that are being offered on one part of town is going to be offered all around town because this is not just a one-side-of-the-city contract.”

Wright Refuse had been the city’s waste hauler since 2014 until it was sold to Rumpke in 2019. The contract expires later this year.

“I’ve had some minor issues,” said Jon Neeper, 7th ward Lima council, who believes some of the problems were due to new drivers on routes.

“I do think that it’s important that when we’re talking about these contracts and these bids that the quality of service is uniform throughout the city and there’s simply no reason why it can’t be,” said Carla Thompson, 3rd ward Lima council.

“We must treat every side (of town) the same,” said Derry Glenn, 6th ward Lima council.

Lima Utilities director Mike Caprella says he believes the situation has gotten better.

“They’re responding to calls quicker, they’re getting to things quicker and we are getting a lot less calls,” Caprella said.

“We strive for exceptional customer service, but things like staffing and the increase in residential trash due to a pandemic can have an impact on our business, but that is not an excuse, and everything that I’ve heard today just leads me to believe that I think we need a strong and solid plan in place,” said Gayne Makaryan, corporate communications manager for Rumpke.

“We’re going to make sure that the service is consistent. It’s not fair to have great service in one area and subpar service in a different area,” Makaryan said.

By Sam Shriver

Reach Sam Shriver at 567-242-0409.

Reach Sam Shriver at 567-242-0409.

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