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LETTER: Board’s approach to garbage is just plain lazy

Garbage bags beside a bin. Stephen Roberts/The Northern Pen photo
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This is a reply to a letter written by Ed Grant, chair of the Eastern Regional Services Board (ERSB) “Is it really about the bag of garbage at the cabin?” in the Jan. 12 edition of The Telegram.
No, it’s not about the bag of garbage, it’s about poor management of this board.

If you are mandated to take over a service than it’s your responsibility to notify every household of this new service and the cost associated! Note I said “take over.” Yes, there was always garbage collection and you opted to pay for this service or be responsible for disposing your own garbage. When this new board took over it did not do its job properly. We were at our summer home on the occasional weekend when time allowed. We always looked after our garbage. We didn’t pay the local guy. So when the local guy got a new contract with ERSB it wasn’t his responsibility to inform households of the new fees!! He was just doing the job he always did … pick up garbage if the garbage was out.
We were not hiding waiting to be caught as Mr. Grant suggests.

In fact, that was the exact mentality I encountered by office staff when I called requesting service — Yup we got you now pay up. You owe us $$$$$ You have owned that property since $&@&.

How can one pay a bill they never receive?

This board didn’t do the work. They knew we owned the property but didn’t issue a bill. We had just retired two years ago and were spending more time at our summer home. It was time to ask the local guy to pick up our garbage. It was only when we enquired about who is the local guy that we were told “Oh you have to call St. John’s now.”

In hindsight I would suggest if we had just put our garbage out the local guy would have taken it and we still wouldn’t have a bill.
When I requested the service we were sent a bill for eight years, but the bill was dated and issued the day I called. There were no previous bills.

This board had eight years to send me a bill but it never once attempted to do its job. If you have an unpaid bill, isn’t there a tax collector that comes knocking?

The difference here is there was no tax collection because there was no bill.

This is just laziness on the part of this board and management.

Two years later and I see the board still hasn’t managed to rectify this error.

Maybe it’s time for a review of the policy and procedure manual. And while they are at it a review of the board itself and its mindset of playing hide and seek.

Marilyn King
Grand Falls-Windsor

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