AMERICUS – The Sumter County Board of Commissioners (BOC) continued to discuss an amendment to its contract with Amerigreen Environmental Recycling at its regular meeting on Tuesday, July 19 at the Sumter County Courthouse.

Commissioner Clay Jones was absent from the meeting, but all the other commissioners were present.

An amendment to the county’s contract with Amerigreen would mean that collection of brown goods, white goods and bulky waste would be the county’s responsibility and at the county’s expense. This is something that was discussed at length during the BOC’s business session the previous week and the discussion continued at its regular meeting with no approval voted yet.

“Brown goods” are considered bulky waste, such as sofas, chairs, mattresses and other similar home and office furniture too large for 96 gallon containers. “Appliances” are considered refrigerators, freezers, washers, dryers, stoves, dishwashers, televisions and other major appliances. “Bulky waste” is considered any object, such as furniture or waste from a residential source other than construction debris or hazardous waste, that weighs more than the weight allowed for containers.

Currently, the agreement between Amerigreen and the County states that Amerigreen has the exclusive right and obligation to provide curbside garbage collection for each covered unit (all commercial units, industrial units, and/or units residential properties in the service area in respect of which Amerigreen has agreed to perform the services contemplated under this agreement), including the collection, transportation and disposal services specified in this agreement. The Agreement states that Amerigreen will provide all personnel, labor, equipment, trucks, tools and all other items necessary to perform the Services and Amerigreen’s obligation under this Agreement. . According to Hooks, if “additional waste” is not collected by Amerigreen within 48 hours after the company has instructed a covered unit to place it on the side of the road so they can pick it up, then if the county or Amerigreen receives a complaint about something lying on the side of the road, Amerigreen will agree to do a special “Additional Trash” collection within 48 hours of being notified that the item is on the roadside. side of the road.

“Additional Waste” is defined as the volume of white goods, brown goods and bulky waste collected from units covered by Amerigreen and included in the $5,500.00 of brown goods, white goods and bulky waste collected in covered units at county expense.

What seems to be at issue here is Amerigreen’s responsibility to collect all those items that people leave in their driveways or on the side of the road and the county’s responsibility in that task.

Commissioner Jim Reid, who said the previous week that residents in his district had complained to him about seeing toilets and other objects on the side of the road and in driveways, said he had thought this issue all week and said he doesn’t, ‘I don’t like the way he looks when he’s driving down the road and sees all the trash piled up around a bum. “It kind of reminds me of when I was in third world countries,” Reid said. He said he doesn’t understand why all bulky items, such as washing machines, refrigerators and mattresses, have to be placed on the side of the road and why it’s the county’s responsibility to pick up those items. “I just think it takes away from the county aesthetic,” Reid said.

Council Chairman Mark Waddell said it felt like if the county didn’t come up with a solution, things would be thrown everywhere.

Amerigreen Vice President Jason Sizemore, who joined the meeting via Zoom, said he believes the county should develop an ordinance outlining what items people can and cannot put in their driveways or on the side of the road because some people are putting tons of trash for Amerigreen to collect, abusing the service provided by Amerigreen. He also said that if company employees drive around the county picking up trash, customers who do so well by calling and asking Amerigreen to come pick up their items won’t be able to have their trash picked up.

Sizemore added that customers should be asked not to drop off their items for pickup until the day before the scheduled pickup so the trash doesn’t sit there for several days. Waddell asked Sizemore what items people take out that they’re not supposed to. Sizemore replied that some people place huge piles of limbs in their driveways and one pile of limbs contained two fully grown oak trees that were cut down.

However, Reid reiterated his opinion that it is not the county’s responsibility to pick up trash and items from people’s yards. “The garbage fee that’s on my tax bill that I pay, I’m assuming is for residential household garbage,” Reid said. “I think the only way to control that is to say, ‘If it doesn’t fit in the hobo then it can’t be put outside on the road and we’re not into that other kind of collecting garbage “. It’s just not our place. Waddell said if the county wants to propose and approve an ordinance regarding this matter, then it must be monitored and enforced. “We can create 15 million prescriptions, but do we have enough people to make sure that gets done,” Waddell said.

No decision or approval has been made on that matter, but Waddell said some sort of garbage ordinance needs to be added to what the county already has. Attorney Hooks said the county already has a solid waste ordinance and it could be strengthened. She also suggested postponing this issue until the next BOC meeting in August.

In other news from the regular BOC meeting, a public hearing was convened to discuss an application by Shitalben C. Patel, the owner of the Get N Go store located at 506 Highway 280 East in Americus, for a license to alcoholic beverages. The store passed all necessary inspections and the only reason to have the public hearing was because the store already has a liquor license but is changing ownership. By law, two public hearings must be held, and the second public hearing on the matter will be held during the BOC’s business session on Tuesday, August 9.

The BOC also voted unanimously to approve the acceptance of federal financial assistance in the amount of $150,000.00 for the design of Runway 50-23 and taxiway pavement rehabilitation parallel to Jimmy Carter Regional Airport with matching funds in the amount of $8,333.00, county funds from SPLOST. This is a joint authority agreement with the County and City of America. Commissioner Scott Roberson made a motion of concurrence and Commissioner Jesse Smith seconded the motion. The BOC voted and the endorsement passed unanimously.

The BOC also voted unanimously to approve the joint comprehensive plan between Americus and Sumter County. This matter was discussed by the BOC in its meetings for several months without any action being taken, but a unanimous vote to approve the joint comprehensive plan finally took place. Commissioner Roberson made a motion of concurrence and Commissioner Smith seconded the motion.