Minden City Council members are picking up on Allied Waste Services' lack of picking up trash.
"We pay allied Waste for backyard service," Minden City Council member Joe Cornelius said. "Most of the complaints that I have received are that the backyard service is not happening as it is supposed to."
According to Mayor Bill Robertson, Minden citizens are entitled to "backyard pick up."
Allied Waste Services is required to retrieve and return trash cans from the "backyard," as long as the trash or garbage is not enclosed in a building such as a garage.
"However, we have several people in Minden who do not want people coming into their yard," Robertson said. "If that is the case, the resident is responsible for placing the trash on the curb and for bringing their cans back to the house."
Roberston said that whomever (the resident or Allied Waste) places the trashcan on the curb is responsible for returning it to the proper place.
"I don't feel that they (Allied Waste) are living up to the contract they have with the city," Cornelious said. "After I call and complain, I see an improvement in my area, but I do not know about the other areas (of Minden). Improvement in my area is not good enough for me. I want to see an improvement over all the city."
Benny Gray said he has contacted Allied Waste with complaints regarding similar issues.
"The biggest complaint that I have received is they (Allied Waste) are not picking up limbs on a regular basis, even if the limbs are cut to the correct specifications and placed on the curb correctly," Gray said. "There are even some complaints of garbage not being picked up out of the cans."
Gray requested a meeting with the mayor and Allied Waste personnel to talk about the issues and work toward a solution.
"The contract with Allied Waste is coming up in the next year or so and as of right now, I do not feel very strongly (in support) of Allied Waste, but I think we can work it out."
Roy Walters, general manager of Allied Waste, said the company strives for perfection, but that because they are in a service industry, issues sometimes arise.
"We have been serving the residents of Minden for about 20 years now and I think we have a great relationship," Walters said. "When there are issues in the City of Minden, I review the complaints.
"I have not received one complaint (to review) from any council member from Minden in over a year," he continued. "When there are complaints, we want to do anything in the world we can to correct them."
Robertson agreed with Walters saying he understands that issues sometimes happen.
"They are not perfect and certainly sometimes I get frustrated, especially when we receive a lot of calls," Robertson said. "But overall, they do a pretty good job, in my opinion."
Residents are asked to make sure all yard waste is less than six feet in length and is not to exceed four inches in thickness.
Limbs and debris should be placed in neat piles along the curb.
If there is a circumstance where trash or garbage is not picked up, a note will now be placed on the door of the affected residence.
Citizens should also note that specific pick-up days are not outlined in the contract between Allied Waste and the City of Minden; however, garbage pick-up should take place twice a week, according to the contract.
According to Allied Waste personnel, four holidays – New Year's, Fourth of July, Thanksgiving and Christmas – are observed by the company that may affect garbage pick-up.
Appliances such as refrigerators and stoves and hazardous material, such as mechanical fluids and abrasives will not be picked up.
Complaints should be directed to Allied Waste Services at 371-1525. However, if the problem is not resolved with one phone call to Allied Waste, residents are asked to call City Hall at 377-2144.