The Real Reason You Can’t Get Adams Sanitation Trash Service In South Santa Rosa County.


Why you can't get Adams Sanitation in South Santa Rosa County

Why Doesn’t Adams Service South Santa Rosa County?

We have received a TON of questions from people over the last couple of months concerning when we will  begin to service  south f Santa Rosa County. 

Midway, Navarre and everyone else in unincorporated South Santa Rosa County appears to be stuck with once-weekly service from Waste Pro for the time being. 

That’s not the way we want it – but that’s the way it is… for now. 

Here’s Why:

Franchise Areas

Starting a trash company is really expensive – truck costs ($150,000 – $350,000 per truck), plus carts, dump fees, employees, medical insurance, truck insurance, an annoying marketing guy, etc. All this expense means trash companies typically need to have enough customers close enough together to make the business model work without having to charge an arm and a leg to take your trash away. On the other hand, the state of Florida mandates that there be trash service available to every member of the community – no matter how remote they are – not ideal for a business that makes its money by servicing customers close together quickly. Because of this, local governments, either cities or counties, will sometimes sign an exclusive franchise agreement with a company to provide service for a whole area so the companies have to service the rural areas in exchange for the opportunity to service the profitable areas. 

At some point in the past, Santa Rosa County’s Board of County Commissioners decided to implement  a franchise area in two areas of the county. The ‘South Franchise Area’ came into being first and is made up of all of the unincorporated areas south of Eglin Air Force Base. Think, Navarre, Midway, Wynnehaven Beach and Tiger Point. Later on, the Commission saw it fit to establish a franchise area in the northern part of Santa Rosa County (Pace, Parts of Milton outside of the city, et cetera). 

Places like the city of Jay, which outsources trash collection to Adams Sanitation and the City of Milton, which has its own trash service don’t fall under the ‘Franchise Area’ agreement we are talking about. 

Basically, these franchise areas work the same way they do for cable companies (I know that probably made you love the idea even less than you already did). This is the way it works in a couple of steps. 

  1. The County asks for bids from different companies – The county is supposed to announce that they are starting a new franchise area, or are looking for a possible change in the exclusive trash pick-up provider. Because that didn’t exactly happen in Santa Rosa County’s north end franchise last year – we were able to get a permit to operate in the northern end of the county.. 
  2. The County then looks at the bids and selects one – In an exclusive franchise agreement, like the one that is currently in place in South Santa Rosa County, Florida Law allows the county to choose one provider and award them the contract to pick up trash 
  3. The waste hauler then is allowed to begin servicing the area for the amount of time that is in the contract. In the case of the South Santa Rosa County Contract, Waste Pro was granted the right to service the area for the next five years, albeit without any competition….  

So what can we do to change this?

Adams Sanitation believes that competition is good for the marketplace and for the consumer. We know we could provide great service at a fair price to south Santa Rosa County. We think that a majority of the  Santa Rosa County Commissioners probably agree with us. However, we also think the County is concerned about liability to Waste Pro.  Unlike the Northern Santa Rosa County franchise area – the Southern Santa Rosa County franchise area was likely created properly. However, none of that changes the fact that Waste Pro was able to renegotiate the terms of the contract and fundamentally change the terms of service (reducing service and increasing price) without having to face any competition. Right now, the best recourse that the  the citizens of the south end of the county have is to directly appeal to the elected commissioners of the county. You can tell your commissioners that you support them allowing competition in the South end of the County so that you have an additional choice in trash service. 

Waste Pro seems to be having  difficultly fulfilling its obligations in other areas of the southeast – and has been kicked out by elected officials in Memphis and Temple, Georgia, and has been threatened to be kicked out in Cape Coral, Florida after trash wasn’t picked up for more than five weeks in some places. There is a certainly precedent for elected leaders to kick companies with a franchise agreement out for poor performance or when the contract isn’t fair to the public. 

You can find out how to contact your county commissioner by clicking the button below:   

Christopher Saul is the Chief Marketing Officer for Adams Sanitation. When he isn’t slinging hot garbage from the keyboard – he is spending time with his family. He also likes to watch his SMU Mustangs play football and basketball. 

We Took A Trash Truck to A Daycare Not every day you get to visit a daycare with a trash truck.  Our Customer Service Manager, Nat Mize, gave a short presentation to a group of three and four year olds at the Early Learning Coalition in Gulf Breeze in March. (She’s been talking about it for the better part of two weeks – she was just as excited as the kiddos she talked to about recycling and landfills!)   These kids were prepared. Like super prepared. When we (Facebook guy Christopher went to take photos and video) showed up – the kids had created a cardboard recycling truck with our logo on the side – complete with wheels and everything!    Nat talked to the kids about the importance of reducing the materials we use when we can, re-using and repurposing the other things we use, and recycling what we can.    We even got to take them on a virtual drone tour of the Santa Rosa County landfill in East Milton!    The kids learned about how much trash we make on a daily basis (about ten pounds per person!) and how we get it to the landfill!   The kids listen while Adams Sanitation Customer Service Manager Nat Mize teaches them about recycling and landfills. The kids of Mrs. Bri’s class smile in front of a Adams Sanitation Baby Garbage Truck! Trash Q and A The kids then asked questions about all sorts of things – they were pretty curious about the trash world! Here’s just a little sample of what they asked: Do trash workers get used to the smell? Yes, they do. There are some people who try the job and realize it is a dealbreaker (it does smell bad, after all) – but most of the trash truck drivers and their helpers (called jumpers) get used to the smell after a couple of days.  Did you always want to work at a trash company? The short answer is no! Most of the members of the Adams Sanitaiton team are in the trash industry as their second or even third industry! But that diverse experiential background means we have really good ideas and opinions on making the industry even better! Where does the trash go? Our trash in Santa Rosa County goes to the Santa Rosa County Lanfill 99.99% of the time. Every once in a while – trash from Adams Sanitation ends up at the Baker Transfer station next door in Okaloosa County.  What should the French National Government do about the waste workers strike that’s taken place for more than a week now? We’re kidding, they didn’t ask that one. Honestly, we’d be in a pinch if they did!  Do you pick up the trash and recycling together? A lot of adults ask us this one, too! We do not pick up the trash and recycling together. Furthermore, our recycling goes to the recycling sorting station in northern Escambia County.    After that – we took the kids out for the best part – seeing an actual (mini) trash truck (that we cleaned thoroughly)!  The kids response was great! They loved the trash truck, listened well and had a good time learning about what we do! We had a great time and hope they did, too!   Nat goes for a ride in Adams Sanitation’s newest trash truck – supplied by the kids at the Early Learning Coalition

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Dump Fees Are Up – Here’s What That Means For Your Trash Bill

Dump Fees Are Up – Here’s What That Means For Your Trash Bill Bottom line up front: Santa Rosa County has voted to increase the cost of dumping trash at the county landfill, which will result in a slight increase in trash service costs. However, Adams Sanitation will not raise rates until their annual increase next year, and the Santa Rosa County landfill is still significantly less expensive than neighboring counties. The increase will cost Adams Sanitation approximately $6,000 per month, but they plan to absorb the cost this year without raising customer rates. Santa Rosa County’s commissioners took a 3-1 vote to raise the cost of dumping trash at the county landfill in February, which means we will all have to end up paying a little bit more to get trash service or to run a trash business.  But there are some critical takeaways from the decision we want you to know about: 🙅 Adams Sanitation will NOT raise your trash rates over this until our annual increase subsequent January 💰It will cost us about $6,000 per month MORE to dump trash every month 💵 The Santa Rosa County Landfill is still significantly LESS EXPENSIVE than taking trash to our disposal facilities in neighboring counties.  🗣️ Tell your friends and neighbors about our excellent service! The more people who sign up with us, the more we can spread costs and keep your rates down! A sky view above the Santa Rosa County Landfill in East Milton. No rate increase right now for Adams Sanitation Customers. Last year, we had to raise rates mid-year due to a doubling of diesel costs. At the same time, this increase in dump fees is not put-us-out-of-business-if-we-don’t-raise-rates bad. We are going to absorb the costs this year. Our team has already had several meetings to determine how we will do that, but it’s been made clear it won’t be through raising your monthly rate.  The total cost for this increase is about 50 cents per customer and household per month and may impact our rate calculator next year. What this costs us The good news is that we can absorb the cost of the increased dump fees for the year. The bad news is that the increased cost will work out to about $50,000 this year alone – a lot of money for a small business like ours to absorb. The Santa Rosa County landfill is significantly less expensive than everyone else’s When we heard we were about to receive a bill of an extra $50,000 from the county, we did what any other red-blooded American would do when faced with a stressful situation – we shopped and price compared.  Believe me when I tell you, despite the price increase, we still have it pretty good in Santa Rosa County. Over in Okaloosa County, the cost to dump the same ton of trash is $75. To take our trash over there, we’d need to charge about an additional $6 per month plus the cost of diesel and labor. That stuff adds up quickly – and we’d soon be forced to charge exorbitant rates just to come and get your trash.  To the west, the Perdido Landfill charges $45.06 per ton, currently $3.00 more per ton than in Santa Rosa County – only six months more. But once you add in the $52 for diesel and $50+ for labor costs, you’re looking at another pretty steep price hike for the same service.  While we’re not thrilled about losing money to this price increase, it could be a lot worse – so, a little bit of a silver lining there. What can be done to keep costs down? The good news is that some factors are keeping our costs down this year! Diesel prices have dropped some as we have matured as a business.  We have been able to keep people around longer term at Adams Sanitation – which means we are running more efficiently. Our labor costs have dropped a bit because we are not constantly looking for new employees, burning them out with overtime, or paying more for overtime work (yay!).  We are also growing! More and more people are signing up daily to get the best trash service in town! That means we can increase our routes’ density- making us more efficient. The more efficient we are, the lower we can keep our prices while still paying decent wages for a (very) hard day of work and making a fair profit.  We still need help, though. If you feel that we’ve earned it – tell your friends, coworkers, neighbors, and family about the high level of service you get from Adams Sanitation. The more people we get to serve, the better off our customers, our local employees, and our small business!

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