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'For the Record'
For the Record: Clarifying the Village's refuse contract
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June 2, 2016

I'd like to take a few moments to address a recent allegation that claims the Village hasn't been collecting on the value of its recyclable materials for 26 years.

The contract has its roots in the year 1990, a time when the world was just waking up to the importance of recycling and taking actions to protect the environment for future generations. At the June 26, 1990 Tinley Park Village Board meeting, the board voted on two notable pieces of legislation: Ordinance 90-O-053 regarding recycling regulations, as well as Resolution 90-R-027 approving a three-year deal with Tinley Park Disposal.

The wording in the ordinance stated the Village is entitled to collect on the full value of the recycled items. This likely was a boilerplate ordinance used by multiple municipalities at the time, which the Village decided to adopt as its own.

The contract with Tinley Park Disposal, a resolution which again was voted on the same day as the ordinance, stated the refuse contractor would give the Village a flat annual payment of $10,000 in lieu of collecting on the value of the recyclable materials. During the 1990 competitive bidding process for the refuse contractor, bidders were allowed to offer various methods of payment to the Village for the value of recycling, including a flat fee.

This payment was increased to $12,000 in 1993 and remained at that rate until the annual payment was deleted altogether in 2001 in exchange for the refuse contractor agreeing to take responsibility for the delivery and cost of recycling bins, an expense the Village had previously paid.

The Village's legal counsel is of the opinion that the contract with Tinley Park Disposal supersedes the Village code, both of which were approved on the same day. In retrospect, the Village should have realized the ordinance and resolution were at odds and reworded the ordinance, but this is a minor issue.

The Village's next steps on this issue will be to reword the Village Code to better compliment the refuse contract.

Click here for a timetable of events, and click here to read the minutes from the June 26, 1990 Tinley Park Village Board Meeting.

If you have questions about the Village that you would like me to address in future "For the Record" columns, feel free to email them to me at .