C&C believes it can continue curbside service, despite Troup County’s exclusive contract with Martin

Published 10:30 am Thursday, April 27, 2023

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C&C Sanitation has sent letters to its residential curbside pickup customers indicating that they can continue service with the company despite Troup County awarding an exclusive contract to Martin Environmental Services.

C&C, which says it currently services 5,500 customers in the unincorporated area of Troup County, said it will continue service by switching to a single-stream recycling service.

Troup County officials have said that Martin has been awarded the exclusive contract, which would not allow C&C to operate residential curbside service.

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C&C did not bid on the exclusive contract, but the county publicly discussed three finalists before ultimately choosing Martin.

C&C CFO Lisa Durden said her company started meeting with RePower South out of Montgomery, Alabama in June to discuss one-bin recycling, and C&C is moving forward with the service to provide an alternative sanitation service.

Durden believes that the single-stream recycling service, which collects residential trash in a single bin and sorts recyclable material, will allow C&C to circumvent the exclusive sanitation contract awarded to Martin Environmental.

Durden said the service repurposes 80 percent of the materials and keeps it out of landfills. She said 20 percent is turned into “fluff,” which is used to make fuel pellets.

Durden asserts that they can offer the service because Martin Environmental said in public meetings that it does not plan to offer recycling.

“He did not offer recycling, so we’re not taking away something that he offers. It’s not trash pickup with the new hauler. It’s a non-mandatory service. You don’t have to have your trash picked up, but that doesn’t mean that you can’t recycle,” Durden said.

Martin Environmental CEO Brandon Hurst did say that they would be unable to offer curbside recycling during the Troup County Board of Commissioners work session on April 18. However, the exclusive franchise agreement also includes recycling.

A solid waste ordinance approved with the contract with Martin included “recyclable materials” in its definition of solid waste.

The ordinance allowing the exclusive franchise also indicates that other solid waste collectors can be cited for violating the ordinance.

Commission Chairman Patrick Crews said the county was made aware of the letter sent out by C&C on Wednesday through Martin Environmental.

A customer had just signed up with Martin, but later called them back about the letter sent by C&C.

“We basically just handed that over to our attorneys for them to pour through,” Crews said. “When we signed the franchise agreement, it’s our belief that we addressed this potential situation. So, we’re going to let our attorneys review that.”

Durden said C&C’s attorneys believe everything she is offering is legal and is not going against anyone’s franchise.

She said her attorneys are planning to meet with the county over the weekend.

Durden said the county hasn’t reached out to her since awarding the exclusive contract to Martin.

“My attorneys read everything, and they have met with RePower South, and they say what goes in [Martin Environmental] cans is considered trash. What goes in this one-bin is a commodity. It is being recycled and repurposed,” Durden said.