At Wednesday’s meeting, the City Commission voted unanimously to renegotiate the City’s contract with Marpan, its recycling processor. The commissioners also received a report made by SCS Engineers on long-term strategies to continue the City’s recycling program.
The City aims to collect 13,000 tons of recyclables annually and to increase the community’s rate of recycling to 75 percent. Tallahassee uses single-stream recycling, which is an industry-wide practice that tends to be easier for customers and results in higher recycling participation rates because customers are able to place all recyclables into one container.
The City’s current contract with Marpan is set to expire on Jan. 31, 2021, and it can be extended for an additional eight months to Sept. 30, 2021. Under the current contract, the City is paying a processing fee of $80.25 per ton for single-stream recycles. With the contract extension, the fee will increase in February 2021 to $89.00 per ton.
Staff reports that even with the fee increase, Marpan’s fees are still low compared to other Florida municipalities.
Back in February 2020, the Commission directed staff to explore other recycling processing options and hired a consulting firm, SCS Engineers, to evaluate the City’s recycling program. The final report by SCS Engineers evaluated alternatives for processing the City’s single-stream recyclables and concluded that negotiating a new agreement with the City’s current single-stream processor, Marpan, is the cheapest and best option.
Based on the findings of the report, staff recommended authorizing the City Manager to negotiate a new agreement with Marpan because it is “the most financially advantageous and best option among all the potential alternatives reviewed.”
The renegotiated contract will take effect in October 2021 and be incorporated into the Fiscal Year 2022 budget.