YORKTOWN HEIGHTS, N.Y. – An attorney for Yorktown's new garbage hauler Competition Carting met with the town board Tuesday night to reassure officials that the carter is ready to get to work despite questions about the company's lack of experience.
Jeffrey Buss represented the company’s new chair Joe Spiezio because the matter is still in litigation. He called Spiezio’s role in the company an “equity position” and said Brian Amico is still the owner and will handle the day-to-day operations.
When the contract was awarded to Amico and Competition Carting in October, some town officials were skeptical that the start-up company could find the manpower and the trucks needed to do the job by Jan. 1. Competition Carting had four employees when it was awarded the contract. The town's previous garbage hauler and second lowest bidder, C.R.P. Sanitation, even brought a lawsuit against the town, alleging the town did not select the "lowest responsible bidder."
Spiezio’s financial backing has helped Amico obtain experienced workers and trucks, Buss said. Competition Carting will operate with 11 trucks and 23 employees, which is more than the eight trucks and 12 employees Amico initially estimated.
“We’re all set and ready to go,” Buss said. “On the contract start day we’ll be ready. No question.”
While switching garbage pickup companies next year will save Yorktown nearly $500,000, some wondered whether those savings would outweigh a loss of experience.
Yorktown changed language in its bid specifications earlier this year that gave new companies, like Competition Carting, a chance to win its residential garbage pickup contract. Yorktown previously required 10 years of experience from its garbage crews, but the new bid had no requirement on experience.
“What you started out to do you succeeded in,” Buss said. “You opened it up, you have a new player, and you saved $500,000.”
Despite trying to assuage any fears the board may have, council member Dave Paganelli said Spiezio and Amico need to meet directly with town officials to hammer out the details with vacation days, industrial garbage bins and more.
“This is a big responsibility,” Paganelli said.
The board also agreed that it should put a contingency plan in place for the worst-case scenario. Buss said it is a contingency plan that town won't have to worry about using.
“CRP was new at one point. There isn’t any reason to anticipate that there’s going to be a default,” Buss said. “It’s going to be what we hope will be really a great service that the town will be proud of.”