City Hopes to Solve Trash Problem

Jeffrey McWhorter

After months of delays in garbage and recycling pick-up and tens of thousands of complaints from frustrated Dallas residents, the sanitation department thinks they have found a solution. On Wednesday, the city council approved two contracts that amount to 72 million dollars. The contracts between the city and temporary labor firms A & Associates and All Temps 1 aim to supply Dallas with more workers who ride on the back of garbage and recycling trucks and aim to get pick-up schedules back on track.  

The sanitation department has been suffering from a shortage of laborers since the beginning of the summer, which has led to long hours and delays in trash collection. Some residents have reported their garbage was left uncollected for as long as two weeks. The workers who remain have been adding extra hours to try and make up for the gaps — sometimes working shifts as long as 12 hours. Current drivers claim that the high turnover rates and lack of interest from potential applicants stem from the long hours and low pay. Sanitation truck drivers in Dallas make substantially less per hour than other jobs in Texas, which require a commercial driver’s license.  

Despite the new contracts, the city expects service delays to continue through at least September. The city is aware of the problems and asks that people wait to call in about their uncollected trash or recycling until at least two days after the scheduled pick-up date.  

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