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The Tentacle


April 1, 2010

Another dip into taxpayers’ pockets…

Joan Marie Aquilino

When have you ever seen government get involved in anything and it not cost more money? Obamacare passed with no answers. Next is the local Trashcare bill making its way through the General Assembly.

 

Am I the only one having issues with this new trend toward fathom bills?

 

When it comes to this latest Pay as you throw fathom bill I just see another layer of government, us paying more for less and small business being squeeze out.

My trash choices are:

 

(1) choose a company according to my criteria and needs.

(2) walk (or drive) down my long county driveway to pick it up my can(s) at the curb after the trashman cometh.

(3) once a week, twice a week or once a month pick-up.

(4) take it to the landfill myself.

(5) if I don't like hauler A, I can switch to hauler B

(6) shop prices

 

The costs vary for all choices.

 

Recycling costs less because the taxpayers are covering the costs and only one hauler got the bid. True and honest costs are not available.

 

We were told government-offered recycling would not squeeze out private haulers, but as we can see it did. Easy yes, but are the unintended consequences worth it?

 

Choice keeps pricing competitive and companies accountable.

 

I don’t want government tracking how often and what I do with their blue micro-chip bin. What next, brown micro-chip cans with alarms if we put out to much trash?

 

Recycling is not FREE, take a look at the system benefit charge on your property tax bill. If you refuse to pay these charges, the county will put your property go up on the auction block? Recycling is government subsidized and taxpayer funded, so who are we kidding. Now they want government subsidized taxpayer funded trash pick-up. More layers!

 

Here is the bottom line on this pay-as-you-throw trash and recycling program. We have recycling already to the tune of staggering multi-millions in tax dollars. Your money!

 

If a pilot program is started in Frederick City as many have suggested, who will be paying for that?

 

City residents in the pilot program? Everyone also lives in the county?

 

Do you refund city residents tax dollars?

 

How will it affect the contract the city already has with the county landfill?

 

How will it affect the cost of added recycling pick-ups?

 

We are told, give us the authority and we’ll figure out details later. The questions are endless; the answers are not forthcoming. The only answer given is why waste staff time working up answers to something we don’t have authority to do.

 

Give me a break! Don’t ask me to give you a hamburger today and you’ll pay me next week.

 

I still can't get straight answers on the full road of where recycling ends up once it leaves my house. I had recycling at my place of business which I paid extra to do, but it was the right thing so I took on the cost. That is until I witnessed them taking my trash dumpster and my recycling bin and dumping them in the same truck at the same time and compress them together. One dumpster over my head was all I needed to cut my costs back. I did this all before it was chic to do.

 

According to Commissioner Green Jeans, this will increase recycling. I’ve ask how and at what costs? Crickets are still chirping away, still waiting for those answers nearly four years now. Where it ends up is of little interest to him.

 

I care enough about our earth that I want to know the entire cycle of recycling and what happens once it leaves my hands. I care about my neighbors, wherever they live, even if it isn’t in my backyard, my state or even my country. So many tend to forget Commissioner Green Jeans/no WTE ever – or anywhere – did vote in the affirmative to send trash to someone else’s incinerator outside Frederick.  He’ll squirm around that one like a long tailed cat in a room full of rocking chairs; but, as he loves to say, “It is what it is”.  He’s on the record for this one.

 

Now that my children are grown and gone, I still produce trash but very little. What does this tell you? It tells me that the hardest hit will still be young and growing families? If I’m to be perfectly honest I can’t afford to subsidize young families so they can afford the extra cost. Individuals can cut their own trash cost by going from two or three pick-ups a week to one or even one every other week. Why does the government need to do that for us?

 

Hopefully I’ve given you food for thought and now you can do your own research and make your own choices prior to government telling you what to do. The path along that trash-filled, yellow brick road is getting longer and wider and there appears to be no end in sight.

 

Please think it through and see that giving up more and more of your controls, choices and freedom is not good for anyone.

 



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