GM’s Corner: Happy two days after Independence Day | SierraSun.com

GM’s Corner: Happy two days after Independence Day

Steve Pinkerton
GM’s Corner

As I said last year in my early July column, it is now safe to go to Raley's again given the end of the extended holiday weekend.

And while you are going to Raley's, we will have staff roaming the community making sure that everything that was purchased at retail locations over the past week has been properly placed in our new waste containers.

As regular readers of this column know, we recently renewed our franchise agreement with Waste Management. In order to ensure that our agreement complied with county regulations, we are now required to mandate trash containers for all curbside service. While many of our residents were fond of their seven bags of trash each week, I'm afraid it is no longer an option in the shift to containerized solid waste.

In order to ensure that the new trash collection process provided the variety of service options our residents needed, our Board of Trustees approved an agreement, which follows best practices. In other words, we have Waste Management provide the containers, so that pickup can be as streamlined as possible.

We also provided a variety of container types at very competitive rates. So that is the good news, expanded, state-of-the-art service at low rates.

The bad news is that the implementation of the new program has been subpar, to put it mildly.

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Here at Incline Village General Improvement District (IVGID), customer service is our top priority. That is why we directly provide nearly all of our services. Unfortunately, it just isn't feasible for us to directly provide trash service. I could fill several columns as to why we can't do it, but I can assure you we would seriously consider providing the service if it was at all possible.

In any case, I want to personally apologize to each and every customer for the poorly executed roll out of the new trash service.

The Board of Trustees and I have made it very clear to our contractor that their failure to meet our community expectations is contrary to our values and mission here at IVGID. We expect our customers to receive the service levels promised every day of the year.  

Even when there are mitigating circumstances, the customer comes first. We expect our employees to solve problems before they happen, and ensure that issues are resolved before they become a problem for our customers.

We were assured that on day one, staff would be trained, phone systems would be upgraded, and that all containers would be delivered in a timely manner. That did not happen.

They were also caught off guard by the huge surge in pine needles needing pickup this spring. It took weeks for them to staff appropriately to address the backlog.

I can say that Waste Management has been very communicative throughout the implementation process and continues to diligently pursue remedies to all of the issues noted.

Our Board of Trustees will be reviewing the entire litany of performance issues at their next meeting. They will determine what actions will be necessary to address the problems encountered over the past nine months.

In the interim, we will work closely with Waste Management to ensure that we quickly resolve the remaining issues. If you have specific issues or questions regarding the new trash collection policies, please feel free to email me at sjp@ivgid.org.

"GM's Corner" is a recurring column from IVGID General Manager Steve Pinkerton, who discusses issues and offers updates regarding various district matters. He may be reached for comment at sjp@ivgid.org.