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Garbage rate increased by 109 Board; Fiscal court, Doug Hoskins explain why

The Bell County Fiscal Court addressed a growing concern regarding an increase in the garbage rate during Tuesday’s regularly scheduled meeting. The garbage bill increased to $14.50 a month, and magistrate Eddie Saylor ask Judge-Executive Albey Brock to clarify who made the change.

“The fiscal court did not vote on that, nor do we vote on that,” said Saylor.

Doug Hoskins with the 109 Board said the increase was made because Waste Connections and Mills Garbage have gradually increased their rates over the past 10 years.

“The 109 Board has absorbed those costs (over that span). They have not been passed along to the customer,” said Hoskins. “We’re no longer able to do that. So, that’s the justification, if you will, for the increase. We’ve been increased, and we’ve eaten it. We can’t eat it anymore. It’s time for the customer to step up to the plate.”

Brock went on to say the increase has nothing to do with the fiscal court. He stated the 109 Board is autonomous to the fiscal court.

Brock also discussed the Pineville water company collecting the garbage bill.

“If you’ve been a customer of Mills Garbage Service in the past, they’re not very good with keeping up with their records,” said the judge-executive. “I’ve had people mad as they could be, they didn’t pick up their garbage, they pay it six months at a time, they’ve shown me their cancelled checks…and they’ve paid their bill. That’s been an ongoing problem…for a long time.

“So, the 109 Board, it’s my understanding, that they reached out to the water company and said ‘we’ll give you (5%) to collect this knowing the water company is going to keep a better record to cut down on the other. So, now you won’t pay Mills Garbage for your garbage service. You are going to pay through the water company, the water company is going to take 5% and pass the rest along to the 109 Board.”

Hoskins said if you are not on Pineville water, then you will continue to pay through Mills directly or pay at the 109 Board office, located along U.S. 25E.

“It’s an evolutionary process, and we’re making a good bit of headway,” said Hoskins. “Our objective is to have everyone on garbage service. It all leads to keeping Bell County clean.”

Other items discussed during the fiscal court meeting include:

• Approval of minutes from previous meeting;

• Pay bills and make necessary transfer;

• Accept treasurer’s financial statement from previous month;

• Accept sheriff’s claim sheet for fee account for last month;

• Approve 2019 amended fee account budget for the Bell County Clerk;

• Approve 2020 fee account budget for the Bell County Clerk;

• Approve 2020 annual order setting maximum amount for deputies and assistants for the Bell County Clerk;

• Approve 2020 fee account budget for the Bell County Sheriff.