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City of Mount Vernon to provide sanitation services for residents, filling void from Petrik closure

Daily Republic - 4/2/2024

Apr. 2—MOUNT VERNON — Nearly a year has passed since a Mitchell area sanitation business closed, and it's left some Mount Vernon residents scrambling to find a reliable garbage hauler.

Residents in the Mount Vernon area, which is about 10 miles west of Mitchell, especially felt the impact of the closure of Petrik Sanitation.

Mount Vernon Mayor Weston Frank has been fielding a steady stream of complaints from some area residents since Petrik Sanitation shut down last year in April. It prompted Frank to respond by purchasing a garbage truck to serve the residents searching for a reliable garbage hauler.

"There is a limited amount of people that provide services to people in this area after Petrik closed. We have had some issues," Frank said during Monday's Mitchell City Council meeting.

Prior to shutting down in 2023, Petrik Sanitation was contracted by the city of Mount Vernon to serve its residents. The city contracted L&L Sanitation, of Plankinton, in the wake of Petrik Sanitation closing.

Due to the volume of complaints funneling in from residents since L&L Sanitation came into the picture, the Mount Vernon City Council backed Frank's plan to purchase a $32,500 garbage truck and begin offering sanitation services.

"The current hauling situation didn't look like we hoped it would. The council and I started looking into how we could improve the situation, and we purchased the garbage truck," Frank said. "We bought the truck from the city of Madison, and it's in solid condition."

On Monday, the Mitchell City Council granted the city of Mount Vernon permission to haul waste to the Mitchell Regional Landfill. The landfill is operated by the city of Mitchell through a conditional use permit from Davison County.

Mount Vernon's population hovers around 460. Mount Vernon city officials would be tasked with setting rates for customers who decide to use the new service.

"What would be nice is if we can maintain our garbage rates for residents. We are going to have to find out how much this will cost to operate, and whether our rates are fair," Frank said.

To haul waste to the Mitchell regional landfill, the city of Mount Vernon will be charged $48 per ton. The Mitchell City Council approved the rate on Monday.

Mount Vernon is located within the Mitchell's landfill jurisdiction, which is why Mount Vernon's landfill fee was set at $48 per ton.

Sanitation companies in communities that fall outside Mitchell's landfill jurisdiction but use the landfill, such as Plankinton, have higher fees. A Plankinton sanitation company's landfill fee is $68 per ton.

Over the past few years, city leaders have been working to reduce the amount of garbage piling up at the Mitchell landfill. The city's single stream recycling program was one method to reduce the tonnage of trash piling up at the landfill.

The garbage that would be hauled to the landfill by the city of Mount Vernon wouldn't result in additional trash being dumped at Mitchell's landfill because it falls in Mitchell's jurisdiction. Petrik Sanitation hauled garbage collected in Mount Vernon to the Mitchell landfill.


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