New stink

Waste hauler pulls out of Government arrangement

At least one private waste hauler has thrown his collection arrangement with the state-run Sanitation Service Authority (SSA) on the garbage heap, amid reports that two of the four other private contractors that have been engaged by the SSA are likely to follow suit.

However, officials of Williams Liquid and Solid Waste Management and Garbage Masters could not be reached for comment after the head of Simpson Trucking and Skip Services Inc Charles Read confirmed to Barbados TODAY that his company had pulled out of the public-private sector garbage collection plan.

Read explained that tens of thousands of dollars in payment were owed to his company by the SSA.

“We stopped about two months ago. We couldn’t continue cause we haven’t been paid. I have written to them a couple times. Up to just now I was up there [at SSA] getting tipping tickets and no money ain’t there yet, so, I hope it gets resolved soon,” Read said.

Though not ruling out the possibility of ever working with Government again, the private hauler insisted  that the outstanding sum must be paid.

“The first step is to get paid . . . and if I go back, we would need to understand what the terms and conditions of going back would be,” he told Barbados TODAY.

He stressed that his company was still willing to assist the SSA, but cautioned that “goodwill only takes you so far”.

“You need some money. It is only simple Maths at the end of the day. When you pay out more than you take in, you would have to make decisions,” he said.

Efforts to get a response from SSA officials were unsuccessful with manager Roslyn Knight currently on leave.

However, Barbados TODAY understands that the SSA has picked up the slack created by the pull out of Simpson Trucking.

It was last October when  the deal was announced between Government and a group of five private waste haulers to clear the island of unsightly piles of refuse, amid complaints by the state-agency about a shortage of trucks.

However, the deal has turned sour with the SSA said to be owing the private waste haulers in excess of $1 million.

The arrangement was supposed to be in effect for six months in the first instance with the private contractors hauling in $411 per hour from Government. This triggered loud protests from the National Union of Public Workers, which is the bargaining agent for the SSA workers.

However, the rate was later revised to $300 per hour, VAT inclusive.

During a row with the truckers back in February over the revised fees, Minister of the Environment and Drainage Denis Lowe had suggested that while the programme had been useful in terms of assisting the SSA with waste collection, it might have run its course.  He had also explained at the time that the SSA was in a position to sustain between 20 to 24 trucks on the road daily.

However, it is understood that only 11 SSA trucks were on the road today.

In the meantime, Government is still assured of the support of at least one of the contracted haulers.

When contacted today, Managing Director of Jose Y Jose Liquid and Solid Waste Management Inc Anderson Fat Child Cherry said he was prepared to stick with the state agency.

“I don’t think we should [pull out] right now. There are no [SSA] trucks in the island. It becomes a health issue if we stop . . . and I would not like the Minister of the Environment to be embarrassed if we stop,” Cherry told Barbados TODAY, while admitting that he was also owed money.

However, he did not reveal exactly how much.

There has been no word from Michael Forde of Forde’s Freighting and Rental Services.

emmanueljoseph@barbadostoday.bb

11 Responses to New stink

  1. Arthur Collymore
    Arthur Collymore September 8, 2017 at 12:11 am

    If Serenader were writing for Corp Over 2017 he would write, SSA, Lowe run down dey. Since becoming a minister of the Crown, nothing but a trail of destruction has plagued every ministry for which he has responsibility.

    Reply
  2. Randy Hartman
    Randy Hartman September 8, 2017 at 12:46 am

    How does one of the highest taxed countries in the world not be able to pay for waste collection?
    And simple things like road upkeep? Mystery

    Reply
    • Gittens Hallam
      Gittens Hallam September 8, 2017 at 12:55 am

      No mystery buddy look deep in certain PPL pockets

      Reply
    • Ali Baba
      Ali Baba September 8, 2017 at 4:50 am

      Gittens Hallam deep deep hallam…who did put the 5 million dollars on da mudda account?

      Reply
  3. Ideliver69 September 8, 2017 at 1:01 am

    This arrangement has been in place 2 months shy of a year and so nothing has changed. No new trucks and no end in sight for this arrangement. Poor ministerial management at its best

    This is as Lowe as it can get

    Reply
  4. Wayne T Griffith
    Wayne T Griffith September 8, 2017 at 2:15 am

    And in the meantime SSA collection employees go to work daily and do nothing because they have no trucks

    Reply
  5. harry turnover September 8, 2017 at 7:35 am

    Thought millions were given to buy NEW TRUCKS and that they were already on the Island.
    Maybe they are being kept UNDERGROUND until after the Hurricane season.
    Hope they surface before the next Hurricane season or they would be catastrophic destruction of certain politicians.

    Reply
  6. Sue Donym September 8, 2017 at 7:53 am

    More in the mortar…
    This is how official inaction worsens things. Gov’t calculates that they can’t sustain payment at the higher rate. Even at the lower rate they take way too long to pay, creating a burden for the suppliers, who they no doubt expect to stay current with their wages, NIS, PAYE, VAT, NSRL.
    Obviously when a contract is renegotiated any service provider fee will factor in the inability to be paid on time. What the public thinks is that private operators are greedy and taking advantage of our caring government.

    Now tell me, when it seems that only one operator will or can hang in with the broken arrangement, will somebody find it a little difficult/awkward to tell him to put his house in order at a location where a burning issue has developed?

    Reply
    • tedd September 8, 2017 at 11:32 am

      also fuel, tyres, general vehicle repairs. all of which has to be paid in cash.

      Reply
  7. milli watt September 8, 2017 at 9:50 am

    me likes how this smelling……..I mean shaping

    Reply
  8. mARIA hOLDER September 8, 2017 at 11:36 am

    Money should have been used to order more truck and the payment should never have been per hour but per tonnage. Thanks to Stuart, Lowe and Sinckler – well thought out plan.

    Reply

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