County Board Set to Stifle Garbage Collection Competition in Three Subdivisions

Allowing McHenry County government and municipalities to seek referendum approval to purchase electricity for homes and businesses makes sense.

Especially since Jack Franks, Mike Tryon and Pam Althoff voted to raise electric rates. (Dan Duffy voted, “No.”)

Something similar is being proposed for three unincorporated subdivisions at tomorrow’s meeting:

  • Covered Bridge Trails north of Crystal Lake
  • the Crystal Lake Manor east of the Vulcan Gravel Pits
  • Fox Lake Vista near Fox Lake

No referendum will be held.

No mention of whether the subdivision residents want such service imposed upon them.

Maybe they do.

The resolution says residents in affected areas have been notified and meetings have been held, but no still referendum has been held as will be the case with electric aggregation.

State law doesn’t require referendums.  It defers to the judgment of the County Board members.

That’s what I found about 11/12 down tomorrow’s County Board packet.

Here’s the rationale:

“…certain areas have been identified in unincorporated McHenry county that because of the density of homes and mature tree cover would benefit from a comprehensive solid waste collection program

“…the designation of an exclusive contractor for waste disposal services should

  • reduce overall waste disposal cost,
  • improve recycling rates,
  • improve air quality,
  • reduce wear and tear on streets and
  • provide a viable alternative to the open burning of yard waste in certain areas of unincorporated McHenry County…”

Heading up the hill in Wonder Lake, I saw these two garbage trucks. The one on the left if Marengo Garbage Disposal. The one on the right is Waste Management, I believe.

Cities and villages have and use such power.

Both Crystal Lake and Lakewood, for example, both contract with Marengo Disposal Company (“MDC” is on the side of the trucks).

If a waste collection company thinks it’s unprofitable to cover part of the county, it won’t do so.

Maybe residents of selective subdivisions can save money by bidding out garbage collection.

The costs Covered Bridge Trails, the Crystal Lake Manor and Fox Lake Vista will pay for the next three years.

A company called Prairieland Recycling and Disposal is set to get a three-year contract Tuesday night.

From what’s in the packet, however, I can’t tell if the above prices, increasing about 8% over three years, are a good deal or not.

Now I could tell you tales about the consolidation of the waste disposal industry back in the 1960’s and 1970’s that are not all that savory.

About that time, Illinois Attorney General Bill Scott brought in an anti-trust expert from Washington who, if he did anything (was allowed to do anything?), it escaped my attention.

Including how the Veuglar’s bought a junk yard dog (so to speak) to protect themselves.

But, that doesn’t have anything to do with this apparent government-imposed consolidation.


County Board Set to Stifle Garbage Collection Competition in Three Subdivisions — 3 Comments

  1. I just paid our quarterly bill to Groot for garbage collection.

    For less service than is being offered by Prairieland at $66.72, I paid 89.48.

    I’d love to have the county impose such consolidation on our subdivision!

    We’d save money and there would be less truck traffic on township-maintained roads.

    Less wear-and-tear on township roads should contribute to making our taxpayer dollars go farther.

  2. I just found out about this this AM when I called Groot about something else.

    We live in Forest Hills and I sure don’t remember seeing anything about this anywhere…not even in the NW Herald, can you imagine!

    There is just the two of us and we put out half of a 30 gal (or less) can plus recycling each week.

    What do I need a 95 gal toter for taking up space in my garage?

  3. Hohumm…

    You don’t have to use the 95 gallon container if you don’t want to.

    I’ve been lobbying to get this service in my subdivision and haven’t been able to get it, yet.

    Mr. Skinner, most rural subdivisions have no ability to negotiate prices with waste haulers as they have no power to obiligate their residents to use a particular hauler -or any hauler, for that matter.

    Much as it may disturb you that it has a role to play, this is one of those things that requires the hand of government to most benefit the citizenry.

    And yes, it IS a good deal.

    For the same or less than residents already pay, they also get their yard waste picked up.

    This is vital for these more older and crowded subdivisions as while they have plenty of leaves to dispose of in the fall, they cannot legally or safely burn them.

    there is no way for most residents to find a patch that’s far enough from a building.

    My subdivision lost a home to fire two years ago when a neighbor’s leaf fire got away from him.

    This initiative is an attempt to resolve the problem to the residents’ benefit -not a power grab or an example of intrusive government.

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