Some Southaven residents say trash piling up after "opting out" - WMC Action News 5 - Memphis, Tennessee

Some Southaven residents say trash piling up after "opting out"

By Daniel Hight - bio | email | Facebook

SOUTHAVEN, MS (WMC-TV) - Southaven officials are giving one recycling company time to clean up its mess after some residents said Waste Connections was not picking up their recyclables on time.

"Looks like dumpster city down here," said Southaven resident Victor McGregory.

McGregory opted out of the city's recycling program two months ago. For three months, it was a free service for all 16,000 residents to try.

McGregory now cannot get rid of his 97 gallon can.

"It'll sit out here and I'll get tired of looking at it and I'll roll it back up for a week or two," said McGregory. "Later, I'll roll it back out here, let it sit another month.

McGregory is one of 6,000 residents who opted out.

"The number one complaint is the people who were 'opted out,'" said Southaven Mayor Greg Davis, "their cans were not picked up.

Davis said Waste Connection, which provides the service, has failed to pick up cans and missed pickup days all together

"There just seemed to be a failure to communicate," said Davis.

The Southaven Board of Alderman voted to give the recycling company 60 days to fix its problem.

"Maybe Waste Connection will see how serious we are about this issue," said Davis.

Waste Connection District Manager Michael Welch said the "opt-out" option was the first he had seen in 17 years in the industry. He said the fallout from it was relatively unknown.

"A lot of that came early and at one time in the program, and that did create some problems in the information flow process and the collection process," said Welch.

The company dispatched as many as nine moving trucks to collect the unwanted cans.

"As our records show, we're pretty much caught up now," said Welch.

Welch said the kinks will get worked out, but 60 days will not be necessary.

"I think it'll only take a few days," said Welch. "And I think we'll have a good result for the residents."

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