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Curbside garbage pickup changes in store for Hillsborough County

5:55 PM, Jan 11, 2013   |    comments
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Tampa, Florida -- Hillsborough County will soon make curbside pickup a little easier for residences.

Starting on October 1, about 250,000 households in unincorporated areas will have new curbside bins for household waste and recyclables. Pickup will remain the same.

"We are going to have the same type of service, frequency with twice a week pickup and continue with the recycling," says Commissioner Al Higginbotham. "We're going to go to automation."

According to Higginbotham, this will save taxpayers $52.7 million over seven years, the length of the new contract.

The same three companies that serve Hillsborough County today -- Waste Management of Tampa, Waste Services and Republic Services -- won new contracts, but their service areas will change.

Residents of unincorporated Hillsborough currently place household garbage at the curbside in bins they purchase themselves, and the county provides small plastic tubs for recyclables. Now the county will provide bins for automated pickup.

This will bring modernization. making garbage pickup safer, cleaner and cheaper since it requires less labor.

"There will be some reduction in the job force," Higginbotham admits, "But remember, this is the second most dangerous job in the United States... not only from a health standpoint, but a hazard standpoint."

The county plans to help transition those workers who will face some type of job reassignment within their company or to look somewhere else for a job.

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