MEDINA — Opponents of the county’s trash plan cited recycling goals and the selection process as reasons to dump the proposed contract with Rumpke of Ohio.
On July 21, county commissioners approved a resolution to pursue a 10-year contract with Rumpke for the processing and recovery of recyclables, as well as the transfer, transport and disposal of municipal solid waste at the former Central Processing Facility in Westfield Township.
The value of the deal has yet to be disclosed, although $850,000 over 10 years was a figure mentioned previously.
At the commissioners meeting Tuesday, Curtis Perkins, president of C. Martin Trucking of Medina, said he didn’t understand why county Sanitary Engineer Amy Lyon-Galvin didn’t use a competitive bidding process, which he believes is required by law, instead of a request for qualifications, or RFQs.
“We did follow a prescribed process that was done under the support of the Medina County Prosecutor’s Office and (the law office of Eastman & Smith, Ltd., of Columbus),” Lyon-Galvin said.
“We have confidence in our legal direction.”
She said the RFQ process was recommended by solid waste consulting firm Resource Recycling Systems and Eastman & Smith on Sept. 5, 2017. They suggested using a design-build process set forth in the Ohio Revised Code.
It begins with the request for companies to submit qualifications, followed by a request for project proposals from the top-ranked responders.
The sanitary engineer then could evaluate qualifications.
“Obviously, the county cannot proceed with this or any other contract procured in violation of the law,” Perkins said at the meeting. “The county should rescind the resolution and restart the procurement process in a legal way.”
Former state Rep. Chuck Calvert, of Guilford Township, said the purpose of the contract was to recycle more and lower costs. Calvert said the proposed contract doesn’t do either.
“There were proposals on the table that would have done just that (increase recycling and lower costs),” said Calvert, former chair of the Ohio House Finance Committee. “The county decided to reject that.”
He said he’s spent many years studying Ohio Revised Code and agreed with Perkins about using an RFQ.
“That was one of the first things that popped out to me,” he said. “I was surprised that the legal people that reviewed this did not see that. It’s pretty obvious what the state of Ohio has to say about bidding. I’m very disappointed in what you have done.”
Lyon-Galvin said Thursday attorneys are still working on the contract’s details.
She said the timeline for equipment to be installed and the former CPF to be fully operational is January 2020.
Under the contract the county is considering with Rumpke, the Broadview Heights company would handle commercial waste, as well as some residential waste from apartment complexes, nursing homes and some condominiums.
Rumpke would partner with Medina-based Vexor Technologies, which produces an engineered fuel product, and Machinex, the primary manufacturer of the equipment the company will use at the CPF.
The drop-off recycling bins around the county services by Kimble Cos. of Dover would remain.
The cities of Medina and Wadsworth run their own residential programs and bring the waste to the CPF. Republic Services handles Brunswick’s curbside waste program.
Several different companies provide subscription curbside collection services in the townships and villages, including Kimble and Rumpke.
Contact reporter Bob Finnan at (330) 721-4049 or email@example.com.