June 19, 2019

County trash removal awarded through bids

MACHIAS — Bruce Walton of Calais was hired Tuesday to clean up county government. Instead of law books, calculators and spread sheets, however, Walton will arm himself with gloves and a truck to meet the challenge.

Walton was the successful bidder Tuesday in a monthlong campaign to seek the best price for trash removal at the county’s courthouse and jail complex in Machias.

In one of their final acts of 1990, Washington County Commissioners Thomas L. Brennan, Robert J. Gillis Jr. and former Commissioner Donald M. Grant agreed to put the trash contract out to bid.

Until this year commissioners had simply awarded Norris Manchester, the county’s buildings and grounds maintenance supervisor, an unbid, unadvertised contract to remove the trash. The contract was renewed annually by the commissioners.

Manchester was paid $1,040 by the county for trash removal in 1990, in addition to his salary. Budget advisers in November, however, strongly urged the commissioners to advertise for competitive bids.

Manchester was one of only two bidders to seek the new contract. At a price of $72.25 a month, the county would have paid Manchester $867 this year to remove trash from the courthouse and jail complex.

Walton, who owns and operates Lilac Waste Removal Co., submitted a bid of $70 a month — $840 for the year — to outbid Manchester and save the county $200 from what it paid Manchester last year.

The agreement includes a requirement that Lilac provide and maintain a dumpster or other refuse container at the county complex. The bid also stipulates that the container be emptied “as necessary.”

County Clerk Ilze Balodis, in notifying Walton on Wednesday, asked that he coordinate his work with Manchester.

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