One member of the Fort Wayne City Council says he’s prepared to subpoena officials from Red River Waste Solutions if they do not show up to tonight’s council meeting. Councilor Russ Jehl tells our partners at WPTA-TV the council is looking for answers regarding the trash collection company’s recent bankruptcy filing.
The Texas-based company, which provides trash collection services for the city, filed for Chapter 11 protection last month, saying the pandemic led to a need for more workers, but also created an inability to find them.
Company officials were invited to speak to the council at last month’s meeting but failed to do so. Jehl says he expects the same at tonight’s meeting.
“For four years they’ve failed to pick up my garbage and your garbage and they’ve been very difficult to work with and despite the city leadership saying, ‘let’s feel bad for them. Let’s be nice to them. If we’re nice to them maybe things will work out.’ They are uncooperative have not responded to our requests,” Jehl said.
According to WPTA, the city claims to have fined the company more than $1 million for missed pickups, but Jehl says more needs to be done.
In a statement to WPTA on Monday, city spokesman John Perlich said, “Tomorrow’s discussion doesn’t involve the City Administration. Garbage and recycling materials continue to be collected and Administration leaders are actively working on contingency plans if any alternative steps would need to be implemented. Administration leaders will also be meeting with City Council members in the coming days to keep them updated on the matter.”