TALLAHASSEE, Fla. – State Representative Randy Fine (R-South Brevard County) and Waste Management Inc. of Florida (“Waste Management”) authorize and release the following statement:
Hurricane Irma seriously impacted the residents of Florida, Brevard County, and the City of Palm Bay in a multitude of ways. One particular challenge in Palm Bay was garbage collection service 48 hours prior to the hurricane’s landfall. As a result of constituent feedback, Representative Fine filed House Bill 971 addressing interruption of services. HB 971 was workshopped by the Energy & Utilities Subcommittee and reported favorably by both the Energy & Utilities Subcommittee and the House Commerce Committee, and is scheduled be brought up for a vote on the House Floor today, March 2nd. Over those weeks, Representative Fine and Waste Management have been in frequent discussion, and have reached the following agreement:
1. Waste Management will publicize a local telephone number for Palm Bay residents to call in the event of any missed solid waste service. That local number is (321) 723-4455.
2. Waste Management will encourage the City of Palm Bay to hold a public workshop in the next 90 days to consider twice-a-week solid waste collection service.
3. Waste Management will continue to work diligently to provide timely and excellent service to all of its customers, both when faced with natural disaster, and during routine times. Waste Management, and its peers in the industry, learned valuable lessons from Irma. Those lessons will be addressed. In the event of a future natural disaster, like Irma, Waste Management will review its processes to ensure garbage is picked up from customers as long as it is safe to do so and the county owned landfill remains open to accept the waste, and will work with its customers, consistent with state law, to resume regular collection services after a storm while ensuring the safety of the company’s employees.
4. Representative Fine will withdraw HB 971 for the duration of the 2018 legislative session, and will monitor the implementation of the steps outlined above over the next year.
Representative Fine had the following statement: “I want to thank Waste Management for working with me to address the concerns of my constituents. The legislative process has worked – HB 971 was developed organically in response to requests from my constituents, and the attention it has garnered has created a cooperative partnership to get them resolved. I look forward to this shared commitment to ensure that all garbage is picked up in a safe and timely manner.”