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Observations and musings on Jacksonville Politics

Another reason the Waste Management no-bid contract is bad

Ron Littlepage has come up with another reason why CIty Council shouldn’t approve the Waste Management no-bid contract, but instead bid it out:  companies are already building plants that can convert about 90% of municipal solid waste into ethanol.  One advantage of the technology is that it reduces our need for landfill space and the exorbitant costs  to close a landfill.  According to Littlepage, the City currently has $35 million sitting in an account to close the present landfill when it runs out of space in 7 years. 

Another benefit to the technology though is that it will reduce our dependence on foreigh oil – estimates are it could replace as much as a quarter of our current use of gasoline.  In addition, the technology also results in reducing green house gases using a theoretically more reliable source of material than corn.  Here are a couple of articles about the technology that I found on the Internet (here and here) just doing a cursory search.

According to Littlepage, the technology should be perfected before the current landfill contract runs out.  However, an early termination penalty clause in the proposed Waste Management no-bid contract would cost the City money just to take advantage of this new technology. 

While I think this new technology presents an excellent reason to reconsider the contract and put it out to bid, we shouldn’t have to be offering various reasons to convince City Council not to approve the deal.  It’s a no-brainer:

A no-bid contract is WRONG.  Plain and simple.  No other explanation needed.

Read Littlepage’s column here.

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