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Wall Democrats Blast Town's Trash Plan

More workers, not more trucks, local Democrats say

The money that the Township Committee would spend to restructure the Department of Public Works could be used to hire 50 more workers instead, the Wall Democratic organization says.

Wall Democrats on Thursday released a statement critical of the administration’s proposal to spend nearly $3.5 million to purchase automated garbage trucks and the trashcans they use, along with other sweeping changes to the DPW.

The plan, under consideration by the all-Republican Township Committee, . It calls for restructuring the administration says will make the DPW more efficient and better able to attend to infrastructure maintenance, where the department is currently behind.

Democrats say the plan is fiscally irresponsible, that money could be better spent hiring more workers and that the plan could be a precursor to outsourcing trash pickup, according to the release.

“This plan stinks to high heaven and leaves us with more questions than answers,” Democratic Chairman Eric Brophy said in the release. “To ask the taxpayers of Wall to support a $3.5 million expenditure at a time when our state’s economic climate is in a state of freefall shows just how fiscally irresponsible this Committee is.”

Brophy says in the release that the committee’s strategy of reducing the town’s workforce – a strategy the committee has previously touted – has failed.

“A result of the reduction in workforce is what has led to them having to spend $3.5 million ‘to get things done,’” Brophy said in the release.

But Township Committeeman Clinton Hoffman, who is in favor of the restructuring, defended the plan.

“We are seriously looking at how we do things and how we can be more efficient with the manpower we have,” Hoffman said. “That’s the very definition of fiscal responsibility.’’

Democrats say in the release that 50 additional DPW workers could be hired for the $3.5 million expenditure proposed in the plan. That would solve any problem in getting needed infrastructure improvements accomplished, the release says.

“We don’t need more garbage trucks, we need more workers,” Linda Edmonds-Faraci, vice chair of the Wall Democrats, said in the release. “Why should the town go into long-term debt on vehicles that have a lifespan of less than 10 years when we can invest in our neighbors and our community by hiring a few more DPW workers?”

Hoffman said the Democrats’ strategy doesn’t add up.

“When you hire more people, there’s the original cost, plus 2 percent the following year, and the following year,’’ Hoffman said. “They’re talking about adding $3.5 million to the budget. That doesn’t make any sense.”

Beverly September 14, 2012 at 06:14 PM
Did they factor in the cost of health benefits? And retirement?
Gary Faraci September 14, 2012 at 07:43 PM
Committeeman Hoffman said. “They’re talking about adding $3.5 million to the budget. That doesn’t make any sense.” He and the Committee are the ones adding $3.5 million and much more when you add in the financing, depreciation, maintenance, repair, insurance, downtime, outsourcing, plow and other costs associated with the new trucks. And that doesn't make any sense
Eric D. Brophy September 15, 2012 at 02:51 AM
Beverly-to clarify, the point was of the release is to point out that the Committee appears to have gone with the first and easiest solution to this relatively simple problem (by throwing money at the problem) when it would be cheaper and a wiser investment to hire more DPW employees. Of course, we don't need 50 new employees, but the point is that you could hire 50 people for the amount that the Committee is committing tom this boondoggle. Practically, 10 employees would probably be sufficient "to get all the work done". At the end of the day, though, the taxpayers have no idea what options have been considered because, once again, the Committee just sprung this on the residents (even though they claim they have worked on this for 3 years)-- surprise! Here's a $3.5 million expenditure. It's just more of the same and they appear not to really care about wasting taxpayer money. I encourage everyone to review the tax increases over the past several years and to ask yourself whether you consider it to be fiscally conservative as each committee member claims to be during his/her respective re-election campaign.
jerseyswamps September 15, 2012 at 09:49 AM
Hiring those who need a job sounds good. But humans also get hurt. Then you have medical bills, lawsuits, pensions, etc. Those garbage trucks that lift the large cans from the side are pretty safe. One guy inside a comfortable cab. No one outside dogging cars, slipping on ice, throwing out their backs, etc.
Resident September 15, 2012 at 12:27 PM
Thank you Mr. Brophy! I was beginning to think I was living in LaLa land. I would first like you to look into the efficiency of the DPW as they are today and then I would much rather spend my money on people rather than machines. As far as health insurance and pensions go, why are those a given for all employees and not for others? My husband is a hard working Electrician and he gets no health insurance nor a pension, and believe me we pay dearly for a private health insurance policy. I am taking notes on the names of the committee members who jumped on board without much investigation to spend 3.5 million and I will get even in the voting booth!
Kidding me! September 15, 2012 at 01:26 PM
Mr. Brophy, Please tell me you are kidding! 1) in 5 years (10) employees would cost over a million dollars a year every year!!! 2) the township needs to buy more garbage trucks regardless of "one armed bandit" or not. You make this obnoxious comment that "the committee has gone with the first and easiest solution", and you havent even attended any meetings! How do you figure they could hire 50 employees for 3.5 million? You are aware the 3.5m is bonded over 15 years right? so how many employees are you hiring at approx 250k per year? How many replacement trucks are buying over the next 15 years? How old are the trucks now? I think the town has spent a little more time on these topics than you have in your uninformed post.
Gary Faraci September 15, 2012 at 05:51 PM
"Kidding me", Please tell me your are kidding! 1) 10 employees would cost about $600-700K a year. And that employs people who need jobs, not 7 trucks at $275,000 each that need financing, insurance, maintenance, repair, fuel, depreciation, downtime, and opportunity costs on top of that. 2) These new trucks will need to be replaced so more cost. I went to the con job meeting and neither Bertrand nor the Committtee could answer how much the total cost of acquistion and ownership of the trucks would be. It showed the town hasn't spent enough time, done the proper cost analysis, nor included the public is this 3 year escapade. What the presentation did show - and what Bertrand openly admitted is that the Township is not able to get the work needed done because they are short-staffed by at least 7 employees. So they should hire the 7 employees they say they need, eliminate the outsourcing of grass cutting that adds another $200,000 annually, and can the truck deal - which will cost much more than $3.3 milllion. We don't know how much more because the Township didn't do their homework
bobbotb September 15, 2012 at 06:43 PM
Both sides make no sense. Where is the economic analysis of this? The business administrator should be directed to perform an economic analysis and present it to the taxpayers. What i see here is a lot of hot air and no real facts - on both sides.
Gary Faraci September 15, 2012 at 07:54 PM
I would welcome a full economic analysis and comparison of hiring employess versus buying equipment. I am not sure we would get a fair & impartial analysis from the business adminstrator though. Remember he was hired by and works at the pleasure of the one-party Committee.
Nice place to live September 17, 2012 at 12:37 PM
right on! Neptune has this system so does tinton falls, and besides if there were jobs to be had no person out of the township employee circle could get them. Iv'e applied for jobs in the past and I just don't have the in or pull required to reap these benefits. I live in wall and pay 12,000.00 a year in taxes.
Nice place to live September 17, 2012 at 12:41 PM
Beverly, No and how about overtime!
momonym September 17, 2012 at 01:09 PM
How do I apply for a garbage picking job that pays $60 to $100 Thousand a year ? I am an over 65 female, I think that qualifies meet to meet the diversity needs of the township !! This is really absurd, I might not be able to pick up the can, but at least it would stay on the property it started out on. Honestly, I am tired of tracking down my can & lid, I should be happy to hear that a robot might be putting it back where it came from. Now, the question becomes, how do I get that can from my back to the front ? Perhaps we should do as Sea Girt does & get some little people in golf carts to bring out cans out for the robot to pick up. Get serious, surely we have other means of cutting costs !
Wall September 17, 2012 at 01:43 PM
Will this end getting home from work to find the garbage cans in the middle of the street only to find a garbage bag at the bottom of the can because someone was too lazy to reach in and pull the one on the bottom out? The public works in Wall is not even close to the surrounding town. Any change will be a good change. The piles of brush have been sitting on the street for almost 3 months. If it's not on the calendar it's not happening. Always an excuse why it can't be taken care of. Maybe someone needs a wakeup call so they realize what a good job they had but they did so poor
Jack Horse September 19, 2012 at 12:53 AM
At your age you should be home to get your can in before the wind blows it down the road
Jack Horse September 19, 2012 at 12:56 AM
And how often do you clean that can. Try sticking your head in a dirty, stinking can. You would leave that bag to
Ipaymytaxes September 19, 2012 at 02:35 AM
Unless these trucks are going to put your can in the back of your house for you your cans will still need to be picked up at the end of the day. Address the issue at hand and not nit-pick the rediculous issue of where your can ends up on your property. And by the way... I would rather see people get jobs that purchase a bunch of depreciatable property that would require a lot of maintenance. Difference between Dems & Rep right there...
Ipaymytaxes September 19, 2012 at 02:43 AM
Wall, its called wind, it blows empty cans. Perhaps at your 'sit at your desk 9 to 5' you don't have to run behind a foul smelling machine all day. I wouldn't call picking up trash "lazy". We need to appreciate the working class and provide jobs for them, Maybe you'd rather have the automatic truck & then call India to complain when your brush isn't picked up at your convenience. We could just eliminate sanitation all together. Wake up call... sounds like you are in need of the wake up call and not think you're so much better than the average Jo.
Wally Wall September 19, 2012 at 01:39 PM
Alot of the plan does not make sense. You are subing out the grasscutting only to start doing the janitorial work that was subed out in the past. They say there are 16 sanitation workers yet only 4 trucks with 2 men go out for trash pickup.That is not true.They claim they are getting the one arm bandit to save from injuries. BUT ! The brush will be picked up by man, NOT machine under the new plan. ???
darko September 20, 2012 at 01:56 AM
First off I pay the same 2.70 per 100.00 of assessed value as everyone else so I don`t wat to hear(boo hoo) I pay 12 , 14 , 16 thousand in taxes.If you want lower taxes move into a smaller house that isn`t worth 1,000,000 dollars and your taxes will go down immeadiately , I guarantee it.Second sanitation workers don`t get paid 80,000 a year.Third put your brush , leaves , garbage , recycling etc out when it is SCHEDULED to be picked up, not when you THINK it should be pucked up.Fourth , do you walk into Wawa or any other store saying I pay taxes or I pay your salary when you have a problem , cause you are a patron to that store.EVERYONE PAYS TAXES AND EVERYONE PAYS THE OTHER GUYS SALARY.Last but not least 3.5 million dollars for new trucks to make up for 5 jobs is ubsurd.I don`t care how you say your getting the money it is still 3.5 million and that money could be spent on other equipment that the town acually needs.I`m not sure why in the paper they figured 900,000 for the cost of employees and 4 new rear load trucks cause I have worked on sanitation for 12 years and in that time they have bought 5 new trucks , figure one every 2 years.I love my job, I love serving the residents in this town and 90 percent of the people i service in the town love me and the service I give them.Hey bricktown has one arm trucks and lower taxes.Just a thought
darko September 20, 2012 at 09:32 PM
.To Beverly and nice place to live , overtime is a thing of the past except for 5 hours on weekends and my health benefits aren`t free.Employees pay into health and retirement/pension plans just like you " taxpayers" so don`t add that to my salary.Wall twp. employees aren`t the only ones that have insurance and retirement.Any person that has a plan where their employer matches their contributions will smoke my stuff any day , don`t hear me complaining about it.

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