Troup County commission approves curbside pickup contract

Published 9:00 am Thursday, April 20, 2023

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On Tuesday evening, the Troup County Board of Commissioners approved contract agreements with Martin Environmental Services to provide sanitation services to county residents.

Brandon Hurst, President and CEO of Martin Environmental Services, was at the commissioner’s work session on Tuesday morning to clarify details about the sanitation contract and answer any questions from the board.

Hurst said Martin Environmental has been in business for 24 years and currently collects trash for about 25,000 houses and 10,000 commercial and industrial customers per week.

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Under the franchise agreement approved by the commissioners, Martin will be the exclusive curbside sanitation provider for the unincorporated areas of Troup County. LaGrange, Hogansville and West Point will be unaffected.

The agreement requires that Martin make curbside pickup services available to all residents in the county, but county residents are not required to use curbside service.

Those who choose curbside service would pay $31.50 monthly for pickup at their homes, $20 for an extra can and an extra $10 for backdoor pickup.

Older and disabled residents would be able to receive backdoor pickup at no extra charge with a doctor’s note.

Residents who contract with Martin will also have the option to drop off up to a 95-gallon container of trash and up to 5 cubic yards of bulky waste at a convenience center once per week at the $31.50 monthly rate.

Hurst said Martin customers can either pay $31.50 per month to get weekly curbside pickup or they can pay $31.50 to drop off up to 95 gallons of garbage per week at a convenience center. Customers will not be able to do both.

Hurst said the 5-cubic-yard limit was chosen because the average pickup truck bed is about 5 cubic yards.

He said workers will also be lenient on the limits if residents go over by a bit, but don’t expect to be able to abuse it.

Workers will have tablets to verify customers are signed up for the monthly fee. Others can pay as they throw at a rate of $10 per 95-gallon cart or $9 per cubic yard for bulky items.

Hurst said they will work with customers who have a genuine need for backdoor service.

He said the request for a doctor’s note is only to discourage people from cheating the system. Even if someone just needs the backdoor service temporarily, like with a broken leg, they would still qualify if there is no one in their house to push the can to the road.

County Manager Eric Mosley said the four convenience centers that will remain open are Knot Road, Hillcrest, Lloyd Tatum and the Work Camp.

Mosley said he expects Martin to be flexible with the locations of the convenience centers if they need to be moved to another location.

“The sites that we ultimately came together on were geographically based number one, but number two, to try to serve more of the rural people the best.  They’re kind of in all four corners, but we’re completely flexible running one versus running the other,” Hurst said. “It’s just long-term feasibility. Some of them are better suited than others. Some are smaller or some have a compactor.”

Hurst said they have equipment and trucks to ensure trash can be picked up anywhere in Troup County, even on dirt roads and long driveways.

He said they have smaller garbage trucks and pickup trucks when needed. They will also work to ensure there is a suitable location to place cans near the road for pickup.

“There’s always somewhere that we agree to put the can. If you truly want the service, there’s somewhere to put it. If you don’t want the service, then there’s probably always an excuse where the can won’t go,” Hurst said.

The commissioners approved an amendment to the county ordinance to allow for franchising sanitation and the residential solid waste collection franchise agreement with Martin Environmental Services with a 4-1 vote.

Only Commissioner Ellis Cadenhead voted against the measure.