Each year, solid waste haulers pay hundreds of millions of dollars in franchise fees or gross receipt fees to local governments. Based on gross revenues billed to the haulers' customers, these fees compensate cities for the use of their streets and rights of way.
At last week's city commission meeting, the mayor and several River City commissioners grilled you on the city's rising costs of providing solid waste collection service. Why wasn't the city able to track its costs more closely? Were costs in line with similar cities providing the same service? Both you and the solid waste director did your best to deflect these pointed questions, but the truth was that Mary in River City's public works accounting division had a difficult time gathering specific answers to these questions when the city manager and the finance director asked them during last year's budget process.