11-8-05 - Sherman sanitation workers are worried that they could lose their jobs if Sherman privatizes trash service. At Monday night’s council meeting, four employees spoke out against the issue of privatization, as others looked on.
The city began accepting proposals from private haulers last week. At stake – private and commercial trash service in the city. Although city leaders have been clear that they’re only looking at options, sanitation workers worry that deals are already underway.
The sanitation department currently employs 28. At Monday’s meeting, they spoke of how the department generates money for the city. "With the revenue we generate it's over a million dollars a year and it's going to grow with Tyson coming in,” said sanitation worker Eric Becker. “If we sell, there's no more revenue coming in."
But Mayor Bill Magers countered that he and the council will do what is best for taxpayers. "As the mayor of Sherman, I have the responsibility to taxpayers as does the city council to consider the options," Magers said. He stressed that no decision has been made and the council is simply weighing their options.
For a private company to even be considered, their proposal must include an up-front payment of $5 million along with ongoing revenues that are much greater than what the city currently brings in.
Private companies have until the end of next week to submit their proposals but the city does not have to accept any of them.
The council will consider the proposals from the private companies at the beginning of next year.