Metro Water Services addresses trash pickup changes

nashville trash can
Posted at 6:10 AM, Jun 10, 2022
and last updated 2022-06-10 07:10:40-04

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (WTVF) — Metro Water is addressing concerns from residents who were told their regular trash pickup would be changed to dumpster service.

The city of Nashville has been dealing with trash troubles for more than two years.

Now, some communities are losing the curbside service they've had for more than a decade.

For residents of several neighborhoods, it was a change that came quickly.

In Antioch at Old Hickory Commons, residents were told their service would eventually switch to either dumpsters, or they would need to hire a private trash collector.

Two neighborhoods in Germantown had their carts taken up some residents reporting they had no notice. Residents said their HOAs received a letter.

For years, Metro was mistakenly picking up trash in neighborhoods outside of its rules.

They discovered the problem when Metro Water took over trash service last year.

"We find homes in subdivisions that are receiving cart service when they shouldn't be receiving cart service," said Sonia Allman, manager of Strategic Communications for MWS. "This is not new. The policy has been in place for 20 years. We've been correcting some of these errors that occur for many years."

Six communities were informed of the mistake in the past month, but the department has found about 200 others.

"I think there may have been some that were realized earlier but action wasn't taken because of COVID and the transition," said Allman. "Clearly, waste services with contractors filing bankruptcy and things that we needed to address."

Residents who are losing their long-time trash pickup are hoping the city will find a way to grandfather them in, so they aren't forced to use a dumpster or pay for a private trash collector.

Allman said the city won't take away trash pickup from its customers. Also, department leaders were meeting with the neighborhoods impacted to inform them of what was happening.

Also, in the future, they'll make sure residents also get letters informing them of any changes.

One issue residents reported is that their neighborhoods weren't designed with space for dumpsters.

Allman said the department hopes to hire two new positions, an engineer and an inspector. They hope this will cut down on the number of instances of neighborhoods with mistaken trash pickup.

Metro Council Member Freddie O'Connell said he was looking into ways for those residents to keep their cart service until a solution can be found.