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Mill Creek’s Waste Management Northwest contract extension provides benefits to the City and residents

The City of Mill Creek extended their existing solid waste contract with Waste Management Northwest for two more years rather than going through an extensive request for proposal (RFP) process.
Mill Creek's solid waste contract with Waste Management Northwest extended. Photo credit: Lesley Van Winkle.

The City of Mill Creek extended their existing solid waste contract with Waste Management Northwest for two more years rather than going through an extensive request for proposal (RFP) process.

At their June 25th, 2013 meeting the Mill Creek City Council voted unanimously to extend Waste Management Northwest’s contract to June 30, 2015.

Tom Gathmann, Mill Creek Public Works Director, recommended the contract extension to give the City time to consider its options, “Several other cities in the region are in the RFP and evaluation process at this time, which provides the opportunity of reviewing the latest solid waste contract provisions and rates prior to finalizing our next long-term contract.”

A Waste Management Northwest representative said that Seatac, Burien and Bellevue are now reviewing bids as a result of their respective requests for proposal.

According to Gathmann, one of Waste Management Northwest’s main competitors, Republic Services, encouraged the contract extension so that Mill Creek would have more time to evaluate competitive bids during the upcoming request for proposal process.

Gathmann said that one amendment to the contract gives Mill Creek residents the ability to request up to two vacation holds for solid waste pickup per year. He said that this optional service suspension has a lot of interest in the community.

The new contract language is as follows:

"Vacation Holds. Single-family residences may request that Contractor's services be suspended for no more than two (2) continuous periods of no less than one month and no more than three months each calendar year based on such premises being vacant during that period of time. During such ‘vacation hold’ periods, Customers will not be billed for collection service. Customers are limited to two (2) vacation hold requests per calendar year. When service is resumed, a restart fee of $7.50 shall be assessed."

Other contract extension benefits include:

  • Greater flexibility for free collection and disposal service at City-owned facilities.
  • Clearer language for eligible person senior discounts.
  • Explicitly stating that yard waste collection is weekly for the entire year, which matches the service currently provided.

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