Trash not picked up by new city contractor

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MEMPHIS, Tenn. -- People living in parts of  East Memphis and Cordova are facing trash troubles.

For two weeks, residents say trash keeps piling up in their front yards.

"Well I've had trouble with them picking up my garbage," Cynthia Grommet said.

Grommet has lived in her Cordova neighborhood for nearly a decade and has never seen anything like this before.

"It's just really frustrating," Grommet said. "My children don't like the smell, and the flies are starting to collect.  And of course when they don't pick it up,  where do you put your extra trash?"

It's been a week since she has had her trash picked up and even longer for recycling.

Grommet said she was forced to pile garbage in her garage because things got so bad.

"It's really starting to get smelly in the whole neighborhood," Grommet said.

"Let me be clear.  Public Works director and staff fully acknowledge a decline especially in the eastern sections of the city," Matori Spencer, Public Information Officer for the Memphis Public Works Division, said.

Matori said the division just signed a contract with a new waste company.

"Our new contractor Inland Waste began July 1," Spencer said.

However, the company is already having issues.

"There are several challenges especially learning the collection routes," Spencer said.

People like Grommet who pay their money for the service said there is no excuse for trash to be left in their yards.

"We'll definitely be forced to hold them to every word in the term of the contract and even if that means terminating our contract.  We'll have to do what we have to do to serve the citizens of Memphis," Spencer said.

Director Dwon Gilliom is expected to meet with the company on Friday to discuss the issues.

If the company does not pick up the garbage and recycling by Monday, Gilliom promised to send city crews to do the work.


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