Sheldon, Iowa – Landfill rates for the deposit of garbage have increased again this year, which has prompted the Sheldon City Council to raise the fee for garbage pickup. The current residential rate is $15.25 per month plus a one dollar fuel surcharge. The surcharge may fluctuate with changing gas prices.
At their meeting Wednesday, the council voted to raise the base monthly garbage rate to $15.50 beginning November 1st, with another 25 cent increase beginning August 1, 2015 and another beginning August 1, 2016. The garbage haulers gets all but $1.50 of the monthly rate, which is used by the City to cover expenses related to administering the program.
The council also held a lengthy debate on the subject of recycling. The two Sheldon garbage haulers conduct regular twice monthly recyclable pickups. The City also has a dumpster for that purpose located in the Community Building parking lot, which was placed there due to several complaints that the blue recycle containers weren’t big enough for their purpose. However, the council members were told that other containers could also be used for recyclables. The other complaint was confusion over the dates of their pickup. With the dumpster available, residents can deposit their recyclables any time, especially if they forgot on their designated day. Now the City finds themselves with a predicament. The use of the dumpster has been so popular that residents wanting to use it often find it full, and businesses who are not required to recycle materials have stuffed the dumpster with cardboard. The haulers told the council that they find only a few people placing their recyclables on the curb because of the popularity of the dumpster, but were told the City is required to offer residential pickup.
The council decided to conduct a survey of residents to help guide them on future policy. Council members have been asked to forward their suggested questions to the city manager, who will then use those suggestions to formulate a list of survey questions.
At the close of Wednesday’s meeting City Manager Scott Wynja gave the council a “heads-up” on the next council agenda. One of the items will be a discussion on who should supervise the Police Department. Currently the city manager appoints the police chief, and has supervision of the department. At the council’s last planning session, a review of this situation was suggested, with the possibility of a police commission to oversee the department.
Wynja also reported that he had spent time in Des Moines on behalf of the Lewis and Clark Water Project and that it appears the 25 million dollars requested from the State of Iowa could be in the Governor’s Budget.
Mayor Katricia Meendering made a comment concerning a complaint that the council minutes aren’t published soon enough. She stated that City Council business is conducted in accord with Roberts Rules of Order, which dictates that minutes not be published until they have been approved, which is always done at the following council meeting.