UPDATE: Petersburg met the CVWMA's payment deadline on Aug. 18, according to the Richmond Times-Dispatch. The city must now present a payment plan for the $613,000 balance by Aug. 26 to avoid any suspension of collection.
An executive committee of the CVWMA's board has been given authority to "take any action necessary" in response to the situation, but they don't anticipate this will be necessary. In an emailed statement, a spokesperson for the city manager's office told the Times-Dispatch that they plan to submit the payment plan before the deadline and residents won't experience any service interruptions.
- The Central Virginia Waste Management Authority (CVWMA) is threatening to suspend waste and recycling collection in the city of Petersburg if overdue payments aren't made, as reported by the Richmond Times-Dispatch.
- According to a letter sent by CVWMA, Petersburg owed nearly $633,000 as of June 30. Though the city recently made a payment of $19,000, its monthly bill is $125,000. Full payments haven't been made since May.
- Residents have been paying their fees to the city, but CVWMA hasn't seen much of it. Petersburg currently has a $12 million budget gap for the current fiscal year and $19 million in unpaid bills.
Since it was created in 1990, the CVWMA has helped 13 member jurisdictions coordinate their solid waste services. In Petersburg's case this involves contracting out pickup to various haulers on behalf of the city. These missed payments affect the authority's overall financial stability and while other members could vote to help Petersburg with its costs, that is not standard practice.
CVWMA has asked the city to submit at least one monthly payment by the end of the week and present a plan for making up the difference by next week. If not, collections may be stopped which they say could have "a dramatic impact" on the health and safety of residents.
Last month, Waste Management also threatened to suspend collections for delinquent customers in Bremerton, WA. As seen in Flint, MI earlier this month stopping collections for even one day can have negative effects on a city. In addition to sanitary concerns this can reduce the confidence of residents in their local government and make catching up difficult for workers.