Privatizing Garbage Service in Benwood

More and more municipal officials are beginning to take fresh, unbiased looks at services their towns and cities provide. Is that the best way for residents and businesses to obtain those services?

In many cases, the answer is no. Letting the private sector take over can save money and often result in better service.

Benwood officials are considering elimination of the municipal waste collection program. During a City Council meeting last week, they discussed contracting with Republic Services to pick up garbage and trash.

One benefit would be freeing up city employees to handle other important tasks. Now, some of them spend a day and a half each week collecting trash.

In addition, Benwood would not have to maintain expensive garbage collection equipment, including a truck.

Details of Republic’s proposal were discussed last week. It sounds as if the company, which provides good service in many other Ohio Valley communities, will do the same in Benwood.

Financially, privatizing the service makes sense. The city garbage department is running a $16,000 deficit.

It makes sense for Benwood residents, too. City service costs $14 a month. Republic would charge $11.

What’s not to like?