Admin The Downey Patriot

Trash rates may increase again
WRITTEN BY :   Eric Pierce

One year after across-the-board rate hikes, Downey residents may be paying even more for their monthly trash service.

Pending City Council approval Tuesday night, single-family households will see their trash bill increase from $15.73 per month to $17.27, while multi-family properties with 2-4 units will pay $16.52 monthly, up from $15.05.

Large residential complexes and commercial buildings with a 3-cubic-yard bin serviced once a week will pay $123.38 per month, a monthly increase of about $10.

Rates for optional recycling bins are also going up, from $71.90 to $78.50 per month for a residential complex of five units or more.

CalMet, the company contracted to pick-up and dispose of Downey’s trash and recyclables, last raised its rates April 1, 2012.

At the time, the City Council signed off on the rate increase but instituted a new “rate adjustment formula” to determine rate future adjustments, which are determined every spring. The city also commissioned a study based on CalMet’s 2011 earnings to determine if they earned a profit of more or less than 10 percent, and if another rate increase was warranted.

Due mostly to increases in fuel costs, the study found that Downey should approve CalMet’s requested rate increase of 2.56% for residential service and 1.97 percent for apartments and commercial buildings.

It also urged “that the rates further be increased to reflect the calculated One-Time Rate Rebalancing Adjustment of 7.21 percent.”

“This type of one-time adjustment is common in many long-term contracts for services and usually takes place at the ‘half term point’ of the contract to ensure that the contractor is not overcharging,” assistant city manager John Oskoui wrote in a report to council members. “The rebalancing adjustment is a one-time increase and CalMet will only be eligible for standard annual rate increases for the remainder of the contract.”

If approved, the new rates will go into effect April 1.

Published: Monday, March 25, 2013, WEB ONLY
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