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tv   [untitled]    April 18, 2011 11:30am-12:00pm PDT

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we have not discussed here 80 -- we have not discussed pier 80. there may be other people who would like to have a say in that, and we owe it to all of them to have that discussion before we make any commitments, but we will certainly look at that. we will make them, for sure, the first offer to san franciscans for a new position. commissioner campos: thank you for being here. just had a couple of follow-up questions -- how many jurisdictions does recology serve? >> last count i remember was approximately 110. commissioner campos: do you pay actual franchise fees, or do you have franchise agreements with any of those jurisdictions? >> we have franchise agreements with the vast majority of them.
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almost all of them provide a variety of fees, and the percentages are all over creation, and the services that we provide under those agreements vary extremely greatly. commissioner campos: do you have a sense of what the range of the fee is that you pay? in the study, it said that the franchise fee agreement shrank from 2% to about 20%. >> a tighter range in our experience is more like five to 15. i would just like to comment on the schedule that was presented before. i think came this summer around 10% or 10.5% of revenues. that number is calculated based on our -- and again, this is totally transparent. all this information is provided to the city on an annual basis. that number was -- that percentage was calculated based
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on our total revenues. although there are some non- collection revenues. franchise fees typically are in our experience calculated on collection of revenues. there are some non-collection revenues in those numbers. that is an open market, and we actually pay rebox fees that are not included. i would say that number calculated the way i was thinking it should be is more like 13%. commissioner campos: i guess, for me, the final point i would make, and this is why it is important for us to get our consultants to get more information about this -- according to the department of the environment, the amount that recology case constitutes about 10 1/6%.
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if we are at 10%, and the report shows that jurisdictions pay a range from 2% to 20%, and you yourself know did you actually have some cases or your range goes to 15%, if you are paying 15% to the city and county of san francisco, that is about $15 million more that would come into san francisco. i'm not saying that is what the amount should be, but if we are getting only 10.6% and some other jurisdiction is getting 15%, we have to ask what is the right amount for san francisco? that is the exercise we're going to. >> the difference, if it is 10%, that difference is 5, and i would argue we think the calculation is more like 13, and maybe the difference is two, and
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maybe revenues are not to 75, because that includes things that are not covered. the number may be is more like 210. again, the issue for us is not whether we are going to pay the city money or not. we want you to get what you believe is right. we will work with you. we just need to make it all right. commissioner campos: thank you. colleagues, comments or questions? why don't we open it up to public comment? i know we have a number of people to speak. i want to take the time to thank commissioner mirkarimi for being here. he has a meeting. he will be leaving when commissioner avalos is back. you each have tilt wheel of minutes -- you each have two
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minutes. >> thank you. i am a ratepayer and a member of the good government alliance. i thank you for starting this process and discussion. in 1932, there were lots of reasons why they needed to consolidate into one entity. however, since 1932, there has been no competitive bid process, and as you know, services have expanded to recycling, to transfer station operations, to landfills. it is an entirely different situation. you also know that there are unregulated commercial rates. businesses and small business in san francisco are critically important. it is a relationship directly between recology and business. there is no interface, and this is a problem. i also would like to urge you to take a look at where ratepayer moneys have gone, which is also the brisbane facility.
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the brisbane facility has existed because of ratepayer costs, and i think the city should have some equity in that. please look at the one-stop complex at the port. barging from the port recologyport now is on a cost- plus contract. this is very unusual. not a fixed price per ton. it is difficult to monitor, difficult to articulate and difficult to really have an overview of any kind of financial problems. recology and department of environment -- i am troubled that they would say because they have this wonderful relationship that we should not have a competitive contract overview. i work for the city and county of san francisco. i had to deal with contracts every year. i had to deal with the budget analyst. that is nothing new. why shouldn't recology? they have had a non-competitive
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process for 80 years, and it needs to be reviewed. commissioner campos: thank you very much. next speaker please. >> executive director of the san francisco labor council. we represent over 100 unions in san francisco, including the workers who actually work for recology and make a living wage with good health care benefits and a pension plan. sitting here for the last hour or so, i think i am even more resolved and committed to seeing that if it ain't broke, don't fix it. i am more inclined to feel that way now, even after listening to some of the testimony and some of the questions you have put together. we have had a couple of contracts in san francisco, including a sludge contract. we have had 1 south van ness that has gone out to bid. people are getting laid off,
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thrown out, fired, and i am concerned as we go through our budget process that we open up something that does not need to be open. these are good jobs. there is a fair process that does seem to be moving forward. i think the questions you asked are correct, but i'm saying -- let's not mess with this contract. let us make sure that we have good jobs, and this is a model program. i go back east to philadelphia and new york or whatever, and when i talk to people back there, they say, "how the heck can you get this much recycling done in san francisco?" this is the one bill that i do not complain about you when i get the monthly bills that come, i do not worry about my recology bill. i think it is fair. so please do not open things up where you do not need to. commissioner campos: thank you. next speaker please. >> san francisco chamber of commerce, echoing the labor council's comments, which is a
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rare treat for us, and the department of the environment also. we have the best refuse, recycling, and composting program in america, and i think actually, your report today was an eye opener for many people. because it verify what we sought but perhaps did not know about the quality of service, the value we are getting as business owners and residents of san francisco. rates -- this is not an issue of the total free market. we have a regulated monopoly. we have had it for over 80 years. the city is the rate setter for residential collection, and that becomes the basis for commercial collection as well. the city is getting a fair return in terms of services and cash, in balancing what those rates should be. if you feel there should be a higher franchise fee, we the
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consumer will pay for it. so there have been decisions over many decades, and i have been around long enough sitting over there 30 years ago as a deputy city attorney, when these issues were opened up before and put before the voters and rejected by the voters. that old phrase, if it is not broke, then do not fix it, it certainly applies in this case, and we urge you to file a very good reports, refer to it, but let's get on and get to zero their version -- or 100% diversion, and zero ways. commissioner campos: thank you. next speaker. >> i represent approximately 1000 members in the collection, recycling, and transportation of the solid waste for the city, and i'm here to speak on behalf
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of my members, members who have worked for the city for 40 years, 20 years, 30 years, waiting for the day when they can retire. the city obviously will have the ultimate decision, but i am here to ask you that these -- the franchise must be left alone. nothing is wrong with a franchise. the company, the corporation has served the city for 70 or 80 years, and it has an excellent record. i happen to be the national director for the solid waste division for the united states and canada, and everywhere i go, everyone wants to know about san francisco, and house san francisco has obtained 75% recycling goals that we have here. everybody from other countries visit san francisco to see the operations. my members work very hard, and i
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think that they deserve to finalize their careers with a good corporation supplying good wages and benefits, so i ask you today respectfully that you table this idea. thank you. commissioner campos: thank you. next speaker please. >> good morning. waste management. i wanted to clarify a couple of points that were stated this morning here when asked the question, what is the difference between san francisco and oakland, the difference is competition. there is no way that any other company could come in and try to bid work for the process. that is one glaring difference. it was asked about the flexibility in adding new services. you know, in oakland, the rate review process occurs every year. during that time, if there is an
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opportunity to ask for more services, they go through an amendment process overseen by the staff and city administrators, so there is flexibility in any franchise agreement. and also, when talking about the franchise fee and the amount that goes back to oakland, it is more like $31 million, but that does not include other free services that fall under the franchise agreement. to that end, we would be very happy to work with r3 to assist in a more thorough analysis to assist -- to determine how san francisco and oakland are very much different. commissioner campos: thank you. next speaker please. >> good morning. i m a user of the dump facility both in san francisco and in south san francisco, so i have a little different perspective from the fine gentleman that spoke earlier. i feel as though san francisco is being taken over the barrel,
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essentially. for me, as a user, i pay $144 a ton in san francisco and $89 a ton in south san francisco, so i think that same discrepancy is being applied to residential users as well as commercial users. my second point is the proposed dump-week lynn, california. as you know, that is a watershed -- dump in wheatland, california. as you know, that is a watershed where they want to located. because trash is not inspected, there is no saying as to the toxicity of users in these dumpsites. although san francisco has a wonderful recycling program, other counties have nothing at all. so their trash mixed with our trash, and if there is a
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contamination problem, there is no saying where it comes from, and it could very well be laid on san francisco. commissioner campos: thank you. next speaker. >> ♪ well, hello, lafco and recology make it good, recology it is so nice to have you back where you belong the city is looking swell, recology i can tell, recology you are still going you are still growing you are still hauling strong one of those -- i will take up all those old-time landfill garbage from way back when
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golly, gee, board fellas why don't you recycle it up, and then you will sell them make it better, recology, once again ♪ [applause] >> sometimes you need a song to take all the tension out of the room. commissioner campos: next speaker. >> hello. i cannot very well top that. i was president of sun said scavenger company 1965 through 1985. i work for waste management for 10 years and sanitary service after that. toynbee and we had a tremendous amount of experience working with smaller companies and larger companies. when i became president of the company, san francisco was
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facing a difficult crisis, filling the day with garbage. we were able to work with the city government of san francisco, and the city of san francisco recognize the scavengers were experts in the solid waste management business, for lack of a better term, and we developed what we called the palace of garbage, which is the transportation mentioned a while ago. the company has grown and expanded, keeping in mind that the city is surrounded three sides by water. has no place even two-part garbage. but working with the city and county of san francisco, and i'm talking about now recology, and we have one of the best comprehensive waste management programs in the world. that is no bread. that is a fact. it is coming from a biased person in a sense because my roots began with the company, the i have seen it grow and prosper, and everything they have done is done exactly right. the more important thing, the rate structure, the way is done,
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you have to show every expense before a public hearing to get through. i would like to refer to the point that we get rewarded for the time for our efficiencies because we are able to work with the city and county to come up with programs in existence today, i had to put my 2 cents in. san francisco does in fact have the best solid-waste management program in the world. no brag. it is a fact. 94 allowing me to speak. >> hello, commissioners. -- sank you for allowing me to speak. >> hello, commissioners. you do not want to hear me sing. trust me on that. i want to talk about a statement made by recology a moment ago about environmental impact currently with the station in brisbane. there is garbage being called to the view right now, and what's
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more, it is double, triple, quadruple handled through brisbane. the trucks go to pier 96. then they drive again through what neighborhood? bayview in visitation valley, right across the street from people's homes, homes where they have the pleasure of smelling that garbage all the time because it is right there. and then, trucks again out of there. i am here seeking support of putting what transfer work and support, farther away from people's homes, especially if you can bring in there and then barge or rail or everything out from that point, so the environmental impact is less substantially. is that feasible? we do not know. this report is supposed to tell us. if you accept the report as it is right now, you will never know.
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the report does not cover it very well right now, and if you do not have competitive bidding, do not have a contract to evaluate it because it is not regularly returned to you, we will never know. what was discussed today about pier 80 is a great idea, and we would never have heard that had we not gotten to this point in the presentation. we need to get rid of the -- not quite accidental, but the notion that our services are done by the hard work and good grace of recology. we need context and we need competitive bidding. commissioner campos: next speaker please. thank you. >> good morning, commissioners. just wanted to echo the sentiments of mr. kelly and others. this really is not about the ecology -- recology. it is a great company. it is worker-owned. they have this whole 0 waste program. we have to look at what is best
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for the rate payers. i heard the gentleman from r3. some of the questions he answered. the other things he did not know the answers to. i urge you to take the time to get the kind of answers that you seek, to find out the truth of these things. codifying these agreements. who is paying what. there are many folks in this room that could tell you the answers that the gentleman from r3 does not even know. it was a good report. not complete. i urge you to take the time. get the answers you seek. i did not know about pier 80, of brisbane. i would like to see the citizens of san francisco benefit. i'm not hearing that. recology does not have any barging facilities in place. they do not even have any landfills. it is not really cost-effective for them if they do not have a place to barge. as i said, there is no doubt they are a good company that does good work, worker-owned and
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all that. but we deserve to get the best possible deal for the ratepayers moving forward. thank you. commissioner campos: thank you. next speaker please. >> good morning, commissioners. i do not mean to repeat what was said about the positions there. i also as a resident of excelsior district said that i am also in the same position, opposing a recommendation. i am concerned about if the question is really about the open competitive bid, looking at how much the fee is because so many questions are related to that.
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that is really beside the point. most of the union members and working people and all the residents are really concerned about the quality of the service they are providing. and if money and nichols and dimes is concerned, ahead of the party service, that we are going wrong way. we need to take a look at not about this, whether waste management they can put a lower bid. it is really other elements. we want the city to be right. zero ways and other quality service. so i hope you consider that. thank you, commissioners. commissioner campos: thank you very much. next speaker. >> good morning, commissioners. in general manager for west -- a tug and barge marine company at
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year 50. we have been a tenant of the port since 1976. our crew members are union members, and we provide a living wage for approximately 65 employees at that location. we provide barging services for a wide variety of items and commodities throughout the day from redwood city all the way up to stockton and sacramento. we feel that if any company would like to work with us in terms of providing this type of service, we can certainly work with them to make this happen. for example, we currently move out two barge loads of molasses each month, and that takes about 200 trucks off the road each load. it would be, like, 400 less trucks. just wanted to bring that to
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your attention and say that it is certainly a possibility to be looked at. commissioner campos: quick question -- you said you had been at the port since 1976? >> that is correct. commissioner campos: have they talked to you about the possibility of margin? >> the city has not. we have met with the court and brought the subject up. commissioner campos: thank you. next speaker. >> i am a resident of san francisco. one of the three objections of -- objectives of lafco is to preserve agricultural land resources. what concerns do you have about taking our black box non- recyclable garbage to a local
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landfill in yuba county, which is surrounded by agricultural land, and which has a large offer for 30 feet from the surface of the land? our concern -- what kind of garbage is recology proposing to send to yuba county? organic or inorganic? at a november meeting, the director and inorganic, but we now know that what goes in the black box includes dog, cat, and the the waste -- baby waste. there are an estimated 120,000 dogs and 100,000 cats in san francisco. public library says there are 25,000 babies two and under. they use an average five or more diapers per day, which means 125 soil baby diapers per day going into the black box. that is a lot of organic matter produced by dogs, cats, and
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babies. so what? organic matter produces methane, a greenhouse gas contributing to global warming. the concentration of landfill gas must not exceed 5%. the latest site inspection report at the landfill showed 14% methane by volume. david osborne said recently to me, they are struggling with this. this, meaning the organic problems in our black box. one reason the sierra club urges the -- [bell rings] commissioner campos: thank you. next speaker. >> i am a san francisco resident. thank you, commissioners and staff, for undertaking this study comparing our bidding process to how other cities and counties in the surrounding bay area collect, hall, and dispose of their black box ways. according to resourced, san francisco will e the only city
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and county disposing of black box waste over 100 miles away. to be precise, 135 miles away. according to the reports, we have closer landfill sites in other locales. with new developments in the middle east, rising fuel costs, this has become an important factor to consider. according to this report, recology can raise rates due to factors such as fuel costs, whether by truck or rail. this has become an important factor to look at. members of the commission, i urge you to recommend a new rfp process for disposing of our black box ways. the current contract under consideration is not a good choice for san francisco ratepayers. the possibility for agricultural or water contamination does not signify a good environmental responsibility on our part as a green city.
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i also urge you to recommend a ballot measure to reform the 1932 ordinance. competitive bidding and a formal service agreement on all aspects of collection, hauling, and disposal is the best way to keep rates even here lastly, landfills should be a thing of the past. europe is using mass incineration that is both cleaner than a barbecue grill and transfers heat to warm their homes. once again, san francisco could lead the way and institute the green technology. i am submitting an article about this from the "new york times." thank you. commissionersupervisor campos: e any other members of the public like to speak, please line up. >> we represent longshoremen in san francisco and the bay area.