[StBernard] Attorney General Opinion
Westley at da-parish.com
Fri May 20 07:30:01 EDT 2011
The problem here is a lack of trust.
We elect these people to make these decisions for us so that not everything
has to go to a vote of the people. The more we look to have elections for
something like garbage collection, the more it shows a lack of trust in the
Of course, in this case, I think it is a lack of trust in the leadership and
the service provider.
If it were put to the voters like any sales tax referendum. The key here is
the public must have a choice - whether that's by each household being able
to accept or refuse the service (thus get their own) or collectively vote
and decide by majority. We all too easily decide among people running for
office, why not for this? I would consent to the Parish President and
Council to agree on the best two contractors/proposals. Each offer can then
be presented to the voters and they go to the polls to decide which one to
go with. The referendum would be decided by the President and Council as to
how payment is collected (sales tax/property tax/water bill, etc.).
Of course the best course of action would be to let each household hire
their own service. From what I've learned, it works very well in St.
Tammany. There's a decal that goes on the can and the driver knows which
house is their customer. Now that is what you call competition - and will
breed lower fees and better service. Because if you become dissatisfied say
with SDT, you can switch to Coastal or Waste Management.
The only exception to all this would be if only one waste contractor is
interested in doing business in St. Bernard - but I seriously doubt that
would be the case.
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