Detroit City Council votes to privatize trash pickup

City Council approves 5-year contract with private trash collection companies

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DETROIT - The Detroit City Council has approved the privatization of garbage pickup, a $122 million move officials say won't save money but will improve and expand service.

The council voted 5-3 Tuesday to OK deals with two companies, which will each handle half the city. That's about the same amount of money Detroit now spends on the service, but residents will start getting curbside recycling and twice-a-month bulk pickup.

Rizzo Environmental Services and Advanced Disposal Services will split $122 million a year under the contracts.

Detroit chief operating officer Gary Brown says about 165 city workers now pick up garbage. He says 30 to 35 will remain as illegal dumping enforcers, while the two contractors will favor current employees when they fill 132 positions.

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