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Author Topic: Once a week trash pickup  (Read 12180 times)
Wrinkle
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« Reply #30 on: January 02, 2009, 03:22:54 pm »

quote:
Originally posted by RecycleMichael

There are around 122,000 residential customers. They produce about 160,000 tons per year. There are about 8,000 commercial customers (including apartments complexes) that produce about 250,000 tons a trash per year. The trash to energy plant was financed by raising rates on both groups.

The trash-to-energy plant and the TARE board were created by Jim Inhofe when he was Mayor. None of the original board members are still involved.

No, the M.e.t. does not get $9 million a year from Tulsa. I wish it were so. We have three separate contracts with Tulsa to provide services including running recycling centers and collecting hazardous waste. We also have similar type contracts with the county, nine suburbs, the state and the EPA. The City of Tulsa pays $40,000 dollars a year to the M.e.t. for administration expenses to pay the overhead.

The amount of money paid to the M.e.t. for 2009 is actually less than the city paid the M.e.t. fifteen years ago when I was hired. I am very proud that we have continued to expand what we do with less government subsidy. We have never been over budget and raise enough money each year from private sources to pay my salary.



I was kind of hoping you'd make my point, thanks.

Please realize this is NOT an attack on the MET, you or even the current Board Members of TARE.

The questions surround the actual NEED for such an organization now that there's no energy coming from the incinerator (exclusive steam contract with Sun Company, a day's work).

The World is in process of trying to transform TARE (Tulsa Authority for Recovery of Energy) into "Tulsa's Trash Board", which it is not.

So, now, if MET gets only $40K from TARE, what happens to the remaining $10M in the budget?

We do know the Mayor has considered the large excess funds in this groups' accounts as pursing funds (used for 2007 Ice Storm cleanup).

fwiw, MET does a fine job from what I can tell and is not related to the issues I have with TARE.

The question remains, what does TARE do that the Public Works Department shouldn't be doing?

« Last Edit: January 02, 2009, 03:24:46 pm by Wrinkle » Logged
Steve
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« Reply #31 on: January 02, 2009, 04:58:17 pm »

quote:
Originally posted by Wilbur

Trash rates are not generated based on the amount of trash I put at the curb (yet, anyway.  



Not directly, but Tulsa does have a "low generator" trash rate for residential customers.  If the average water usage on your Dec., Jan., and Feb. bills is 2,000 gallons or less, you receive the low generator trash rate for the year, about $3 per month less than the standard residential rate.  I think the rationale is that water useage in these months mostly excludes landscape watering and is the best indicator of the # of occupants of the home and therefore the volume of trash generated.  I always go extra-stingy with water usage during these months and I have received the low trash generator rate for years.
« Last Edit: January 02, 2009, 05:04:01 pm by Steve » Logged
RecycleMichael
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« Reply #32 on: January 02, 2009, 05:01:17 pm »

Trust authorities exist for many reasons, including financing capital improvements, setting long-term priorities not connected to frequent re-election campaigns, investigating best contracts and practices independent of public staff, and even sometimes being critical of city workers.

The TARE board serves these functions just like the Tulsa Metropolitan Utility Authority does for water rates. Yes, I once argued your point that the TARE board could cease to exist without the "Energy" part of their name. But I lost that argument for valid reasons. The board still has important work to do.

I also am not here to blanket defend the TARE board. I have had many confrontations with members in my years in the industry. I have been grilled and blamed for things over the years I shouldn't have been and I have also made a fool of myself fighting for things that I should have been smarter than to start.

But this report, done by a reputable outside firm, is coming to a conclusion that I totally agree with. This is a great way to improve our trash service/recycling/composting programs without charging the citizens more each month.  

I hope others read our conversation. I thank you for the chance to explain my views.
« Last Edit: January 02, 2009, 05:02:32 pm by RecycleMichael » Logged

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MDepr2007
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« Reply #33 on: January 03, 2009, 12:54:58 am »

quote:
Originally posted by Steve

quote:
Originally posted by Wilbur

Trash rates are not generated based on the amount of trash I put at the curb (yet, anyway.  



Not directly, but Tulsa does have a "low generator" trash rate for residential customers.  If the average water usage on your Dec., Jan., and Feb. bills is 2,000 gallons or less, you receive the low generator trash rate for the year, about $3 per month less than the standard residential rate.  I think the rationale is that water useage in these months mostly excludes landscape watering and is the best indicator of the # of occupants of the home and therefore the volume of trash generated.  I always go extra-stingy with water usage during these months and I have received the low trash generator rate for years.



I have fescue that I water during our warm spells in the Winter[Sad]
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MDepr2007
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« Reply #34 on: January 03, 2009, 12:59:12 am »

How much did we citizens get over charged because of TARE? Will we get it back now that it was used for the ice storm cleanup and awaiting pay back from the Feds?
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Wrinkle
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« Reply #35 on: January 03, 2009, 05:16:34 pm »

quote:
Originally posted by MDepr2007

How much did we citizens get over charged because of TARE? Will we get it back now that it was used for the ice storm cleanup and awaiting pay back from the Feds?



I've been waiting to hear of the Feds reimbursement, which I do think has occurred, but so far as I can tell, none of that ever made it back to TARE. $11 Million.

But, I'm not worried about TARE, they already have another $11 Million cash accrued since then.

It's the process...

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Wrinkle
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« Reply #36 on: January 03, 2009, 05:21:48 pm »

quote:
Originally posted by RecycleMichael

Trust authorities exist for many reasons, including financing capital improvements, setting long-term priorities not connected to frequent re-election campaigns, investigating best contracts and practices independent of public staff, and even sometimes being critical of city workers.

The TARE board serves these functions just like the Tulsa Metropolitan Utility Authority does for water rates. Yes, I once argued your point that the TARE board could cease to exist without the "Energy" part of their name. But I lost that argument for valid reasons. The board still has important work to do.

I also am not here to blanket defend the TARE board. I have had many confrontations with members in my years in the industry. I have been grilled and blamed for things over the years I shouldn't have been and I have also made a fool of myself fighting for things that I should have been smarter than to start.

But this report, done by a reputable outside firm, is coming to a conclusion that I totally agree with. This is a great way to improve our trash service/recycling/composting programs without charging the citizens more each month.  

I hope others read our conversation. I thank you for the chance to explain my views.



THIS Trust Authority existed for ONE reason, to support the Incinerator deal. Period.

It's not a question of if they can find something to do, it's if they NEED to exist.

As you know, our Mayor is quite proficient at contracting out of state studies.


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Wrinkle
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« Reply #37 on: January 03, 2009, 05:37:20 pm »

My real concern, however, is the recent startup of the incinerator as a private operation. No less, by the same company who went bankrupt on it with an EXCLUSIVE contract and REQUIRED dumping of ALL Tulsa's trash there.

Tell me how they expect to make a profit running it now, with no City trash coming there?

I suspect (I said 'suspect') the startup and this trash study and some as yet unannounced intentions will bring these two together again.

The first thing I want from the incinerator is a City Council REQUIRED new BACT Test for the incinerator, performed with whatever materials it is they intend to burn there.

If they won't be burning City trash, they will have to haul trash in from somewhere else.

Pehaps they have renewed their Federal contract to dispose of chemical warfare agents. Last time it was just for the pallets, but anything is possible.
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RecycleMichael
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« Reply #38 on: January 03, 2009, 07:18:34 pm »

Tulsa has no power over the trash-to-energy plant anymore. When all of Tulsa's trash was going there, TARE officials demanded monthly reports of all regulatory compliance. The trash-to-energy plant is now competing with landfills for commercial trash and outside Tulsa solid waste.

I still see all their air quality permits, but it is because I take the initiative to contact the DEQ and EPA officials on my own. At this point, they are in complete compliance.

I protested the burn plant when Inhofe proposed it. Then in the early 90s, I was hired to be the city of Tulsa recycling coordinator and was forced to be a tour guide of the plant. I can argue both sides of burning versus burying.

I think Tulsa would like to take their trash their again, but Mayor Taylor was very insistent that Tulsa wasn't willing to pay considerably more money just to take trash there.
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Wrinkle
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« Reply #39 on: January 03, 2009, 07:39:46 pm »

quote:
Originally posted by RecycleMichael

Tulsa has no power over the trash-to-energy plant anymore. When all of Tulsa's trash was going there, TARE officials demanded monthly reports of all regulatory compliance. The trash-to-energy plant is now competing with landfills for commercial trash and outside Tulsa solid waste.

I still see all their air quality permits, but it is because I take the initiative to contact the DEQ and EPA officials on my own. At this point, they are in complete compliance.

I protested the burn plant when Inhofe proposed it. Then in the early 90s, I was hired to be the city of Tulsa recycling coordinator and was forced to be a tour guide of the plant. I can argue both sides of burning versus burying.

I think Tulsa would like to take their trash their again, but Mayor Taylor was very insistent that Tulsa wasn't willing to pay considerably more money just to take trash there.



You go build a private incinerator and see how much input the City has as to what you do.

But, I suppose the existing incinerator was somehow diagramatically omitted from the City Limits. Clean Air restrictions, however, extend well beyond such boundaries, ask Edmonson about water shed issues which are similar.

This plant, as far as I can tell, hasn't had a BACT Test since the first two units were installed. Even the third unit managed to avoid a BACT Test when it was built by some 'expansion' provision. We know from that the plant failed to perform even as designed, much less within compliance. The $10M spent (by us) to upgrade the filtering also never had an actual test performed. It's time for one, a formal BACT Test by EPA.

I would think the owner's would be pleased to show us what a good steward of our air they are.

So, what do you think they're going to burn there? Unsold copies of the World?

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RecycleMichael
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« Reply #40 on: January 03, 2009, 10:31:55 pm »

Sorry to burst your knowledge bubble...but there really isn't a BACT test as you call it.

BACT is a term meaning Best Available Control Technology. Here is a legal interpretation...

Section 169(3) of the federal Clean Air Act defines BACT as follows:

The term "best available control technology" means an emission limitation based on the maximum degree of reduction of each pollutant subject to regulation under this Act emitted from or which results from any major emitting facility, which the permitting authority, on a case-by-case basis, taking into account energy, environmental, and economic impacts and other costs, determines is achievable for such facility through application of production processes and available methods, systems, and techniques, including fuel cleaning or treatment or innovative fuel combustion techniques for control of each such pollutant. In no event shall application of "best available control technology" result in emissions of any pollutant which will exceed the emissions allowed by any applicable standard established pursuant to section 111 or 112 of this Act. Emissions from any source utilizing clean fuels, or any other means, to comply with this paragraph shall not be allowed to increase above levels that would have been required under this paragraph as it existed prior to enactment of the federal Clean Air Act Amendments of 1990.
 
The definition states that BACT "means an emission limitation based on the maximum degree of reduction of each pollutant subject to regulation under this Act emitted from or which results from any major emitting facility." It is interesting to note that BACT is somewhat of a misnomer. The form of the requirement is defined as an emission limitation and not as an equipment standard. Therefore, one is constrained to assume that the emission limitation would, in many cases, correspond to the emission rate achieved with either basic or control equipment which would otherwise be determined to be an appropriate control technology requirement. In other words, BACT should be established as a performance requirement, not as an equipment requirement, on authorities to construct and permits to operate.


The trash-to-energy plant was issued an air quality permit by the state and is in compliance. Air quality is monitored three times per second. The test results are all available for review from the state DEQ.
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RecycleMichael
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« Reply #41 on: January 03, 2009, 10:37:33 pm »

quote:
Originally posted by Wrinkle
So, what do you think they're going to burn there? Unsold copies of the World?



A typical trash truck holds about six tons of trash. The tipping fee is negotiated between private parties, but I know that the burn plant is offering prices that are about five dollars more than the landfill.

A typical commercial hauler might spend $30 per load more to burn than bury, but the trash plant is usually way closer and can save him employee time and fuel by avoiding driving out to a distant landfill.

That is where they will get most of their trash. They can legally bring in outside waste, in fact, so can the landfills. Most of the trash from the Springdale/Bentonville area has been trucked to Cherokee County for years.
« Last Edit: January 03, 2009, 10:38:09 pm by RecycleMichael » Logged

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Red Arrow
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WWW
« Reply #42 on: January 04, 2009, 03:56:09 pm »

quote:
Originally posted by RecycleMichael

A typical trash truck holds about six tons of trash. The tipping fee is negotiated between private parties, but I know that the burn plant is offering prices that are about five dollars more than the landfill.

A typical commercial hauler might spend $30 per load more to burn than bury, but the trash plant is usually way closer and can save him employee time and fuel by avoiding driving out to a distant landfill.




I wish I could get the oil companies to pay me to fill my car with gas.
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Steve
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« Reply #43 on: January 05, 2009, 09:09:07 pm »

quote:
Originally posted by MDepr2007

quote:
Originally posted by Steve

quote:
Originally posted by Wilbur

Trash rates are not generated based on the amount of trash I put at the curb (yet, anyway.  



Not directly, but Tulsa does have a "low generator" trash rate for residential customers.  If the average water usage on your Dec., Jan., and Feb. bills is 2,000 gallons or less, you receive the low generator trash rate for the year, about $3 per month less than the standard residential rate.  I think the rationale is that water useage in these months mostly excludes landscape watering and is the best indicator of the # of occupants of the home and therefore the volume of trash generated.  I always go extra-stingy with water usage during these months and I have received the low trash generator rate for years.



I have fescue that I water during our warm spells in the Winter[Sad]



No offense, but why people in Tulsa have fescue lawns is a complete mystery to me.  I have a zoysia lawn in the front and side yards, bermuda in back.  Both are warm season grasses that go dormant in the winter, and require no watering but from mother nature in the winter. In 22 years, I have never had to reseed, and weed control is miminal, hand weeding in the zoysia and 1-2 annual sprayings for weed control in the bermuda.  I do water shrubs in the winter during dry spells, but never water the grass, leaving that to nature.  So winter water usage for me is strictly indoor, thus contributing to my low usage and preferential trash rates.
« Last Edit: January 05, 2009, 09:15:49 pm by Steve » Logged
inteller
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« Reply #44 on: January 05, 2009, 09:18:38 pm »

so, I know the trash to energy plant is paid for, but is it actually being used?  I thought it was shut down because they couldn't get enough trash to power it or some ****.
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