When Spencer-based Complete Recovery announced it would be opting out of its contract to process recyclable materials for the city of Spencer, city staff solicited proposals from other companies.
After reviewing proposals from three companies, city council members voted unanimously to prepare a five-year, residential recycling agreement with Van's Sanitation and Recycling, of Le Mars.
"Van's Sanitation provided us a very good proposal," Spencer Public Works Director Mark White told the public works committee prior to the council meeting.
Highlights of the proposal include free processing and contamination removal and a $5 per ton payment to the city for loading materials onto a trailer that will be provided by Van's.
White estimates a positive impact of $2,625 annually.
Millennium Recycling, of Sioux Falls, and Horizons Unlimited, of Emmetsburg, also submitted proposals.
While Millennium also offered free processing, it would charge $40 per hour to remove contamination that the city would have to collect. The city would also have to purchase a new 53-foot trailer and pay for transporting recyclables, putting the cost of the agreement at about $14,332 when fuel and maintenance costs are added into the equation.
Transportation costs to and from Horizons would be less, but the Emmetsburg-based company would charge $20 per ton to process the material, putting the estimated cost at $13,635. That proposal included a 10 percent refund if the average commodity price increases from the current rate of $93.50 to $150.
"We spent a lot of time reviewing numbers," White said.
Following that review, city staff recommended a contract with Van's, which was represented by owners Scott VanderSluis and Terry Baartman.
When councilman Rich Prentice asked about the handling of hazardous materials, White said that portion of the contract still needs to be negotiated.
"Education is a big part of that," VanderSluis said. "In Le Mars, we pick it up every other week. The contamination we get is far less than in other cities. They educated people right and got the information out just like you want to do."
White acknowledged that adjusting to a bi-weekly recycling schedule, which is set to be implemented in April of 2013, will also be a challenge.
Under the agreement, glass would still not be recycled.
"It is a hard commodity to get rid of," Baartman said. "Pure glass by itself is recyclable, but it's difficult to sort."
Though the city did not approve an agreement with Horizons, individuals may still recycle glass there and continue to take other recyclable materials to Complete Recovery.
In other business, the council:
-- Approved a resolution regarding an emergency sewer repair project between East 15th Street and East 16th Street west of Fairview Avenue. Bids will be accepted Oct. 1 in an effort for work to be completed by Dec. 1.
-- Adopted a mission and vision statement, adopted a Spencer employee volunteer policy and approved a resolution to state support for actions aligned with becoming a Blue Zones Certified Worksite. Blue Zones representatives joined city staff for a ribbon cutting following the council meeting.
-- Approved a $9,700 contract with McGladrey LLP, of Mason City, for a technology assessment. Additional related expenses are estimated at $2,000 or less.
-- Approved a near $14,000 change order to a contract with S.M. Hentges & Sons, of Shakopee, Minn., for phase one of the Combined Sewer Overflow project. Valley Contracting, of Estherville, was also approved as a subcontractor for the project.
-- Learned the drug take-back will be from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. on Sept. 29 at HyVee.