EMMAUS BOROUGH COUNCIL
The Emmaus Borough Council voted to expand their refuse and recycling contract with J.P. Mascaro & Sons for another year at its May 1 meeting.
Mascaro’s vice president of sales and operations manager met with the health, sanitation and codes committee to discuss the upcoming contract as well as concerns residents and council members had.
“We went over a few of the issues that have come up over the past year, and some of the things that we see and hear from people in the borough,” Councilman Jeff Shubzda said.
Councilman Nathan Brown, who said he originally was going to be against the extension of the contract, stated the conversation was a “good, healthy discussion” that changed his mind about the extension. “They understand where we’re coming from, and I think they know what our expectations are, and they’re getting better at it.”
Brown had been going door-to-door to ask residents how they feel overall about the borough, and the number one concern was the garbage. “I just wanted to let people know that their concerns were made to J.P. Mascaro, but also J.P. Mascaro has been correcting their issues as well.”
Borough Manager Shane Pepe piggybacked on what Brown said by commending Mascaro on their quickness to fix issues. “One thing that we’re quick to do is sit down with them and point out the issues and concerns from the community, and I think they’ve been very, very responsive when we talk to them about things.”
Pepe also pointed out the borough receives half the complaints from residents about this hauler compared to their previous hauler.
Council was able to negotiate a 0.5 percent increase, about $4,000, in the contract as opposed to the original 1.5 percent increase Mascaro had hoped for. Pepe said the 0.5 percent increase has been the same increase it has been the extent of the contract. The contract will run through Dec. 31, 2018.
Council President Brent Labenberg asked if the weight of the trash has increased, because the rate of the contract is usually set based on the weight of the product the company is collecting.
“It’s actually steady or slightly increasing; total refuse is slightly up,” Pepe said.
Pepe said while the refuse is going up, the recycling totals are going down. “The amount of garbage going up and the amount of recycling going down is a direct correlation.”
He said the borough needs to step up their efforts in terms of education marketing information, and more to make sure the public is aware of what they should and should not be recycling.
In other news, council approved Resolution 2017-18 which is the signing of the Keystone Recreation, Park, and Conservation Grant contract the with Emmaus Public Library. The resolution includes provisions of grant management and oversight, as well as final reviews and approvals going through the borough manager. The $500,000 grant will help to remodel and improve the library.