FORT WAYNE, Ind. (WANE) — A Fort Wayne city councilman wants to refund residents for the poor – and nonexistent, in some cases – trash and recycling collection over the last month.
And he wants to use the fines the city collects from Red River to pay for them.
Councilman Russ Jehl (R-2nd) plans to introduce a resolution to City Council that would “maximize the fines for Red River’s last month of poor service and instead return those funds to the longsuffering ratepayer,” according to a news release.
The resolution, which Jehl will introduce at council’s Tuesday meeting, “prevents the Fort Wayne Solid Waste Department from paying Red River for June’s services until it presents to City Council the fine it intends to levy. The resolution also calls for consideration of utilizing these fines as refunds for the ratepayers via a bill credit,” the release added.
Jehl plans to detail his plan during a press conference Monday.
“As Fort Wayne’s long tenure with Red River comes to an end, we need to ensure that there is a full accounting so we do not pay Red River a penny more than necessary for its lack of service,” said Jehl. “The ‘transition agreement’ doubled Red River’s scheduled compensation, but the City Administration clearly warranted that if Red River did not perform it would not be paid. After years of being told that fining Red River to the full extent of the contract would cause Fort Wayne residents poor service, it is imperative the final accounting be done publicly so this debacle ends with a semblance of justice.”
WANE 15 has asked the city on several occasions whether residents would be refunded for poor trash service. The city has continually shot down the suggestion.
Red River’s contract with the city is over at month’s end, after 4 1/2 years of issues. New contractor GFL will take over the city’s trash and recycling collection on July 1.