Two city council members call for Memphis to dump Waste Pro, request residents receive credit

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MEMPHIS, Tenn. — Two Memphis City Council members are calling for the contract with Waste Pro to pick up trash in some Memphis neighborhoods to be terminated.

Councilmen Ford Canale and Chase Carlisle made the announcement Tuesday. The city has been in contract with the company since July 2019 to service some areas of Memphis.

In the past 30 days, the city’s 311 system has logged more than 2,000 complaints about missed pickup, mostly from those areas.

“After months of continuous complaints of trash piles and missed pickups, I have had enough,” Councilman Canale stated in a release. “As a basic function of city government, citizens expect to put their garbage out and for it to be collected, without piling up in their front yard.” 

In 2018, the city ended its contract with Inland Waste due to poor services.  

On April 6, Canale and Carlisle said they will introduce a resolution requesting the Strickland administration terminate and rebid the Waste Pro contract.

Monday, Mayor Jim Strickland responded to citizen complaints about trash pickup, which had been featured in several stories by WREG. He said:

“First and foremost, I’m sorry and I take full responsibility for our lack of adequate Solid Waste service to some Area E residents which is made up of Cordova, Hickory Hill and parts of East Memphis.

The lack of service is completely unacceptable. I want you to know that we are actively working to find a long-term solution. To help alleviate some of the backlog, this past weekend and for the next few weeks we will have City of Memphis crews working overtime to get your trash picked up, and I want to thank them for stepping up to help.

Again, I apologize for the lack of service, but please know we’re working diligently to get this issue permanently resolved.”

MAYOR JIM STRICKLAND

In addition to cutting ties, some council members said they are going to bring legislation to request a one-month credit for all of those affected by the lack of adequate service residing in Area E.

In a press release, they said the following:

Councilwomen Rhonda Logan (District 1) and Patrice Robinson (District 3) and Chairman Frank Colvett (District 2) have all received and responded to your calls throughout the past year concerning the service failures by Waste Pro. During this time, each have held numerous town hall meetings and conversations with the Administration and the Solid Waste Division to devise the best way to service all of those affected.

However, due to the egregious nature of service, Councilmembers Logan and Robinson and Chairman Colvett will bring forward legislation to request a one-month credit for all of those affected by the lack of adequate service residing in Area E.

Currently, we are working to get City of Memphis crews and other contractors to the area to make up for this failure.

Councilwomen Logan and Robinson, as well as Chairman Colvett, encourage you all to continue to place your trash at the curb for collection and call the Mayor’s Action Center (311 or 901-636-6500) with any complaints until this issue is resolved.

WastePro did not respond to a request for comment Monday.

However, the company said in a news release that the city of Germantown had recently renewed its contract with Waste Pro serving 13,000 customers for five years.

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