Sarah Ebeling | Managing Editor
Only a handful of people were at last week’s regularly scheduled Parker City Council meeting. The biggest topic of discussion though was the city’s plan to bid garbage.
Resident Tonya Wickstrom spoke first, thanking the council for listening and asking the group not to change the ordinance. She explained that she knows some people are loyal to a company and some are concerned about the rates and if rates would be higher through the city. She also noted that many do not want the garbage to be like a homeowners’ association and that this will hurt free enterprise.
Mayor Ron Nelson spoke and explained that an issue currently is that many are not following the city’s ordinance that requires them to have garbage service and with having one garbage service, the city would be able to know who does and who does not have service. Nelson noted too that they would not necessarily go with the lowest bid.
Wickstrom asked if they could have a freeze on service and not have as many garbage companies in town. She said she wants someone good to pick up her trash. She also questioned house side service and who would be willing to go to the home to pick up people’s trash if they could not bring it to the curb. Wickstrom said she believes that this decision should come from a vote of the people because some want this and others do not. She noted that she did not want to be pushed into a petition because she didn’t want to do it, but people need to have the choice.
Resident Nash Eickholt also spoke and asked about the city’s reasoning for doing this.
Nelson explained that the streets are a main reason and for keeping fewer larger trucks on the streets. He noted that the other reason is that people are not picking up their trash and they want everyone to do what the ordinance says.
Eickholt asked if this would affect people’s taxes and Nelson said no. Finance officer Adam Jans explained that the mill levy has not been raised.
Eickholt said he is all for free market and understands wanting to maintain roads, but as a citizen he has concerns on the service.
Nelson told the group that they are not reinventing the wheel and that Parker is not the only town that does this. He noted that from his standpoint, the pros outweigh the cons.
Council member Arnie Erickson spoke to the council about the city’s issue with golf carts. Erickson said that he almost hit a cart full of kids over the weekend and he wants law enforcement to enforce the law pertaining to kids and golf carts.