Harrison County averts garbage strike, but issues remain

Harrison County averts garbage strike, but issues remain
At a meeting Thursday, Waste Pro assured Harrison County its trucks will continue to empty your garbage cans. But before that meeting started, garbage pickup across the county was in limbo. (Photo source: WLOX)
At a meeting Thursday, Waste Pro assured Harrison County its trucks will continue to empty your garbage cans. But before that meeting started, garbage pickup across the county was in limbo. (Photo source: WLOX)

HARRISON COUNTY, MS (WLOX) - At a meeting Thursday, Waste Pro assured Harrison County its trucks will continue to empty your garbage cans. But before that meeting started, garbage pickup across the county was in limbo. Why? Because of a difference of opinion between the county's garbage pickup provider and the Harrison County Utility Authority.

According to the utility authority's Executive Director Donald Scharr, Waste Pro managers sent a letter in late December to the utility board. That letter, Scharr told WLOX News, questioned an $85,000 fine levied a month earlier against the company. The utility authority director said the fine was based on a series of issues, including customer complaints about garbage pickup.

"We've had complaints. We've had issues," Scharr said. "We want Waste Pro on an upper management level to work through these issues."

Scharr admitted Waste Pro questioned how the utility authority analyzed those customer complaints. And because the company felt the fine was unwarranted, he told us Waste Pro's December letter said it would consider suspending garbage pickup service in Harrison County.

However, after what Scharr called "a good, productive" one-hour meeting Thursday, Waste Pro reportedly dropped any plans to park its garbage trucks. Scharr noted his agency wasn't "in the business of issuing fines," and the garbage company, he said, doesn't believe in suspending its service.

The two sides agreed to schedule future meetings and review garbage pickup requirements.

"We're both committed to getting service for the county that we're supposed to get," said Scharr.

Waste Pro picks up garbage at almost 68,000 homes across Harrison County.

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