- by Jarrel Wade, August 6, 2014, Tulsa World
Trash board members voted Tuesday to begin the process of seeking bids for contractors to pick up curbside green waste and take it to the city’s burn plant.
The recently introduced plan from the Tulsa Authority for Recovery of Energy is to send green waste to the city’s burn plant permanently, essentially ending Tulsa’s curbside green-waste program as it was originally promised.
The TARE board vote authorizes staff to invite bids from contractors for board evaluation and possible acceptance at future meetings.
The vote followed discussion about several contractual obligations that hindered implementation of the new plan.
TARE officials have said their goals are to keep costs low, keep the system environmentally responsible and make the trash system simple for customers.
One problem is that the city would be forced to continue requiring that green waste be put in clear plastic bags even though it likely would go in the same trucks to the same location as trash.
The contract with the city’s haulers, NeWSolutions, requires that green waste be in a separate waste stream, TARE attorney Stephen Schuller said.
“Competitive bidders could bring a lawsuit on such a fundamental change,” he said.
Another problem discussed was TARE’s inability to seek bids for contractors to take the green waste to the city’s green-waste facility, which some board members had requested for price comparison.
Schuller said a contract between the board and the burn plant mandates that all green waste — if taken by a TARE contractor — go to the burn plant, owned by Covanta Energy.