BEATRICE – The Beatrice City Council has voted to acquire the assets of the city’s current garbage hauler, a step toward making the process of garbage hauling a local government function.

The council voted 7-0, with one member absent, to acquire the business assets from Sanitary Garbage Company and the estate of Emma Von Busch for $1.4 million. The company, whose contract will expire at the end of next March, has provided garbage hauling service in the community since the late 1970s.

"The city issued an RFP in July of this year. We received one bid...that being from Waste Connections. In August, we re-bid it. That time we received three bids...Waste Connections, S-Two Refuse and Recycling, and they're out of the Fremont area...and then Midwest Refuse and Waste, as well. At that point, the city starting looking at evaluating the option of city providing trash hauling services ourselves. We looked at other communities that do this today...Fairbury does it, Hastings does it, just to name a couple of them. In that process, we determined it was a viable option for the city to look at hauling trash ourselves."

City Administrator Tobias Tempelmeyer says the asset purchase agreement includes a building at 8th and Caldwell, seven acres of land, two balers, twelve garbage trucks and over 660 dumpsters or roll-offs, along with tools and other equipment.

"We would look to close April 2nd of 2021, which is a Friday. Sanitary Garbage would haul trash on Friday, April 2nd. We would close and then the city would start hauling trash on Monday, April 5th."

Tempelmeyer says a next step will be getting consent to the assignment of assets from other smaller communities served by Sanitary Garbage Company. Tempelmeyer says the city would also be credited money for each roll-off once it takes over management of the containers. The contract also calls for an environmental review of the company’s property.