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Two haulers ask again to pick up trash

LAWRENCEVILLE - Two residential trash haulers terminated from the county last week have applied for permission to again pick up garbage in unincorporated Gwinnett.

Red Oak Sanitation and Quality Waste Services turned in paperwork, including the missing bond information that led to their losing permission to keep collecting garbage in the county, owners of each company said.

Paul Eppinga, the county's licensing and revenue manager, confirmed he had received the necessary paperwork from each company Tuesday. He expects a third terminated company, commercial hauler JC Roadrunner Inc., will also reapply this week.

The three companies were terminated Feb. 11 after they repeatedly missed deadlines to turn in bond and insurance information. Since last year, the amount each company was required to pay in bonds doubled, and the haulers said they had difficulty finding someone to insure them.

The review process of the new applications should take four to six weeks, Gwinnett Clean and Beautiful Director Connie Wiggins said, before the applications go before the county's Board of Commissioners.

Marlon Luce, the owner of Red Oak Sanitation, said he lost between 700 and 800 of his 6,000 customers after the termination notice went out, but he expects to continue collecting trash without a hitch. The notice gave the companies until March 31 to stop hauling.

Richard Watson, who owns Quality Waste Services, said he had lost several customers but would not venture a guess as to how many.

"Luckily, we have a lot of resilient customers who have been with us a long time," he said. "We're wading through it right this minute. We're just trying to keep on going."

The termination of the three companies is in no way related to a new trash plan, slated to begin in 2009, that divides the county into eight service areas, Wiggins said. It will also have no bearing on the companies' ability to apply to pick up waste as part of that plan, which is in the draft stage and is being reviewed by the Atlanta Regional Commission and the state's Department of Community Affairs.