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Seniors to get break on trash bills

LAWRENCEVILLE -- Two years into Gwinnett's mandatory trash plan, commissioners approved breaks for seniors and owners of vacant property.

The discount, which will apply to 2013 bills, allows about 15,000 seniors to receive a 15 percent reduction to the annual bill, which was about $217.92 in 2011. The break, approved Tuesday, applies to seniors 65 or older with an annual income below $10,000 who have filed a senior homestead exemption, as well as those with incomes up to $25,000 who qualify for a senior school exemption. Disabled people with an L5A exemption also qualify.

Commissioners also approved an exemption for property owners with valid vacant structure or boarding up permits. County officials said the housing bubble left about 1,500 vacant structures in the county, according to permits.

An analysis released last month said the savings -- which will amount to about $33 a year for seniors -- would cost the county more than $500,000. But officials imposed a 3 percent regulatory fee for commercial solid waste, which is expected to pay for the measure.

"These tweaks to the solid waste plan address inequities for owners of vacant properties, give qualified seniors a break and help promote recycling throughout the county," Solid Waste and Recovered Materials Director Tom Keith said. "Our residential customers have already recycled more than 41,000 tons of paper, metal, glass and other materials since the countywide solid waste program began two years ago."Commissioners also approved changes to the county's solid waste ordinance related to the appeals process associated with hauler performance and allowing quarterly billing for residential parcels such as mobile home parks with service fees that exceed $25,000 annually. In addition, commercial trash haulers that serve Gwinnett businesses will be required to offer recycling, beginning Jan. 1, 2013. The requirement to all authorized haulers who collectively serve more than 6,500 commercial and construction/demolition accounts in unincorporated Gwinnett County.

Comments

R 1 year, 10 months ago

Thank you for your willingness to adjust the project somewhat BY giving some of us a little of our money back ... Going into an election cycle...

We respectfully request you consider giving us all breaks by allowing us to pay the designated mandatory hauler ourselves - just .like we used to do monthly.

And the ability to stop service - WITHOUT being billed - while out of town.

After all we use the hauler call centers more often than the county's, often at the county's REQUEST!

There's more to cut to return to a true, conservative style of government.

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BufordGuy 1 year, 10 months ago

I just LOVE how they say this cut will COST the County $500,000.

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R 1 year, 10 months ago

Buford By golly you're right!

Actually they taxed the commercial providers and that will come back incorporated in their client's final cost to the consumer in the end user product purchase price.

So the total was just " transferred" and really NOT a reduction at all, Gwinnett is getting pretty good at this transfer stuff... Churn'in', Churn'in, Churn'in - keep that cash a Churn'in RAWHIDE!

"But officials imposed a 3 percent regulatory fee for commercial solid waste, which is expected to pay for the measure."

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Mack711 1 year, 10 months ago

OK They picked up 41,000 TONS of recycled material. What did they do wiith it? If they sold it that could amount to a lot of money. Take that money and apply it to OUR bill so as to lower the cost of the plan to everyone as well as seniors. All for giving Seniors a break and they should get it, after all they earned it. As r said the county asks us to call the hauler direct, well shut down the county office and that should save some money.

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kevin 1 year, 10 months ago

sure they sold it for money. I asked them to look into a company that paid the homeowner once a year based on the amount recycled, but Nash has never responded to my inquires. This was even brought up at meetings with Bannister. The County did not want the people to reap the benefits of recycling. This way government can control that money. Instead of power to the people, the BOC wanted "power to the government."

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BenDover 1 year, 10 months ago

I Hope the Seniors in Peachtree Corners, go to the city council meeting and voice their concern....

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R 1 year, 10 months ago

Maybe the city leaders of Peachtree Corners should actually exercise one of the 3 reasons they chose to become a city-lite - the ability to set up independent trash collection and save their citizens’ some expense.

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Freeme 1 year, 10 months ago

Wow--- It's been two years of the Gwinnett's mandatory trash plan and the commissioners have just realized that they have been charging for vacant properties! Now that they have been over charging, they will have to imposed a 3 percent regulatory fee for commercial solid waste?

Give us back our right to choose and these problems will go away!

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Freeme 1 year, 10 months ago

It's been two years of the Gwinnett's mandatory trash plan and my commissioners MIKE Beaudreau still refuses to return calls or answer emails related to this issue. Who are the commissioners really representing? .... Let your voice be heard at the next election!

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BuzzG 1 year, 10 months ago

We are supposed to be the land of the free. Hell, we aren't even free to hire our own trash hauler. What I want to see is a law stating that trash haulers and their families may not contribute to the election campaign of anyone running for elected office in Gwinnett. You know the reason they took our garbage away from us is they expect nice "contributions" from the trash haulers at election time. Gwinnett has become a cesspool of corruption and the BOC has long been at the center of it.

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freegeorgian 1 year, 10 months ago

So it begins. With the County in total control, the tax breaks begin for the "special". This is already proving to be detrimental policy on the school tax side. With seniors getting exemptions from school taxes the leaders can't politically afford to go back and start charging them now with a major shortfall. When the trash program gets upside down, we'll be in a similar pickle!

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CD 1 year, 10 months ago

@ free: how could the trash plan ever end upside down? Don't forget our yearly prepayment is locked away in a very secure, Al Gore-type lockbox. Never would those funds be used to further the desires of the Gluttonous Heathens and their ilk.

Not even Shirley Griselda Blanco Escobar and the cartel could break in to that lockbox--never. Blanco disappeared from sight in 2004 and is believed to be in hiding; I believe she was hiding as a district commissioner.

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R 1 year, 10 months ago

What's all that talk about having skin in the game? There's NO real incentive to control costs - because it reduces the incoming county revenue steam they collect in advance and pay out over time.

If incoming costs go up, so do "ours" and the county just sits on MORE money...

Yes sirree, Signing that “consent order” was the beginning of a beautiful long term tax increase wrapped up as a "GREEN JOB" . Yeah it’s a JOB alright…

We still remember

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jamesgriffin 1 year, 10 months ago

I am HAPPY with the current trash solution. We only have those heavy trucks in our quiet little neighborhood on ONE day a week now. It has reduced noise. It has reduced the number of days I have to stare at trashcans at the curb from 6 to "1 and 1/2". And most important - the "food buffet" for racoons, possums and rats isn't out every day, so they've migrated to an area where food is more plentiful. Thank you, commissioners.

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R 1 year, 10 months ago

Could have done THAT under the old franchise agreement .... No high priced court consent order needed.

AND we could have kept competition in the equation to boot.

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nicholson 1 year, 10 months ago

Exactly, R. And we would not have to pay a year in advance, which is ridiculous.

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nicholson 1 year, 10 months ago

Jamesgriffin, if you were having problems with raccoons, possums and rats, it wasn't the free market system of trash haulers that was causing your problem - obviously you didn't have a secure lid on the trash can which can easily be fixed, without taking away everyone else's rights.

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