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Commentary: Vote Perryman, Ferry for Sanitary District

November 02, 2012|By Jim Wahner

Claim: CMSD politicians vote themselves a "Cadillac" health care plan.

Response: The Board did vote for Board members to be able use a group health care plan just like City Councilmen and MESA Water Directors have. One Sanitary Board member has opted to use the plan at a cost to the public of $112 per month. The Board member pays about $470 per month.

Claim: Costa Mesa residents pay ($19.95), nearly double what Newport Coast pays.

Response: It is an apples to oranges comparison if you read the contract. The actual cost for CMSD is $16.50 versus the present NC contract cost of $14.50 per the trash vendor which is the same for both areas. The NC contract only requires the trash vendor to recycle 40% versus 50% for CMSD and allows up to 60% of the trash collected to go straight to the landfill, huge savings for the trash vendor. The NC contract is a two can system versus the Sanitary District customer preferred single can system.

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Claim: Lobbyist for the trash hauler contributes $10,000 to CMSD politicians.

Response: The two incumbents have received $ 10,000 or any money from the trash hauler.

Claim: Reduce trash rate by bidding our trash contract which has not been bid since WWII.

Response: A staff report on the District's trash vendors was written this year. It notes the Sanitary District was self hauled for the first 40 years. In 1984, 1994, and 2006 private trash vendors were acquired. The District, over the years, has negotiated the contract many times because of change of ownership of the hauler, as well as other issues. The District is not required by law to competitively bid this contract. The District, under the direction of the board and its management, initiated many new and innovative ideas in order to benefit the taxpayers and residents of Costa Mesa. One of which is the popular one-trash can system. This means that the residents do not have to separate their trash, it is done for them. The District has, at no additional cost to its ratepayers, offered many additional programs such as large item pickup, the sewer lateral maintenance program, Christmas tree and hazardous waste pickups, telephone book recycling program, the home generated sharp recycling program, the tire recycling program, and recycling workshops which are not available at other cities.

Claim: Refund the $5.5 million surplus/overcharge. You are due a refund.

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