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Jackson Garbage Collection to Continue After Temporary Agreement With Contractor

A man with black glasses and wearing a navy suit looks to the right
Jackson City Council President and Ward 1 Councilman Ashby Foote told the Mississippi Free Press on Oct. 7, 2022, that the City had reached a temporary agreement with Richard's Disposal that will allow garbage collection services to continue for now. Photo by Kayode Crown

Richard’s Disposal, the company that collects garbage for the City of Jackson, will continue providing services to more than 150,000 residents in Mississippi’s capital city for now after U.S. Southern District of Mississippi Magistrate Judge Michael T. Parker mediated a temporary settlement, City Council President and Ward 1 Councilman Ashby Foote told the Mississippi Free Press Friday night.

“The agreement is that we pay them for their six months of work they’ve done for approximately $4.8 million and they agreed to continue to pick up trash until the Supreme Court decision is made,” Foote said.

The momentary detente comes a day after the City announced that the trash collection company would cease all collections after Saturday, Oct. 8, due to nonpayment.

Mayor Chokwe A. Lumumba is appealing a chancery court’s ruling that said he cannot veto a “no” vote from the City Council rejecting a one-year emergency contract with Richard’s Disposal. The body earlier rejected the company’s bid for a six-year contract, following a request-for-proposal process which began in 2021 and included Waste Management and FCC Environmental Services.

Foote predicted that the Mississippi Supreme Court’s decision will not come down for months and that Richard’s Disposal will continue to pick up garbage in the city until then, as per the agreement reached earlier today.

“The agreement calls for them to pick up garbage until the Supreme Court comes down on the appeal of the veto of negative votes, which is before the Supreme Court appealed by Mayor Lumumba,” Foote said. “So they’re committed to picking up garbage until that time, which could be two or three months from now.”

All this may depend on an upcoming Council vote to pay Richard’s Disposal. Foote said the vote will come up on Tuesday, Oct.11. “They probably do have to vote on this,” he said. 

You can read more of our reporting on the Jackson garbage issue dating back to September 2021 here.

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