- Waste Management, Inc., has sued Carson, California after failing to win renewal of its residential trash collection contract, according to the Daily Breeze. On May 1, the city filed a motion to dismiss the "baseless" and "frivolous" suit.
- City code requires the contract to go to the lowest bidder, in this case, the locally-operated company EDCO. Instead, Carson awarded the contract to Gardena-based Waste Resources, Inc. (WRI). Calling the bidding process an "arbitrary and capricious sham," Waste Management accused Carson of preselecting WRI and breaking its own bidding rules.
- Ahead of WRI starting its new 15-year contract on July 1, Carson Mayor Al Robles told the Daily Breeze that Waste Management has not yet turned over data about its customer base to WRI as required. Waste Management has chosen to "stop its feet, kick and scream, throw a tantrum and otherwise behave in an unseemly manner," he said. Despite that, WRI has moved ahead with customer surveys and information sessions.
Claiming that its bid would have brought Carson 15 times more revenue than the eventual winner’s, Waste Management — a major player across the state — wants Los Angeles Superior Court to overturn the new contract and restart the bidding process.
This is not the first time a waste collection company has turned to the legal system over a bidding loss. Late last year Republic Services sued Middletown, New Jersey, claiming the township violated state law in awarding a five-year hauling contract to Central Jersey Waste and Recycling. Though Republic’s bid was higher, the company alleged faults in the winner’s bid. The case has not been resolved.
Meanwhile, public complaints have grown as the City of Los Angeles revamped its waste hauling system in recent months, and citizens attempted a referendum to end it. Waste Management is one of the companies involved in the multi-zone, supposedly more efficient system that has broken down into complaints of lapsed service and higher fees. To avoid this, Carson officials have scheduled three public meetings over the coming month.