Waste Management has more success hiring new employees and staff illnesses are down.
Manatee County Utilities Public Information Officer Amy Pilson said illnesses within Waste Management employees has been the cause of late garbage collection the last few months.
It is a problem that has confounded some county residents who have seen garbage sit at the end of their driveways for longer than expected.
However, Pilson said Waste Management is getting back on schedule with successful hires as of late and should be back on regular schedules soon if not already.
“These difficulties were recognized, and the hauler has worked diligently by modifying, increasing and improving its effort,” Pilson said. “It has seen success through a significant jump in the numbers of employees hired since Aug. 1.”
Waste Management isn't alone when it comes to service issues. Many area businesses have experienced labor issues the past 18 months due to the pandemic.
Waste Management, which handles garbage and recycles hauling in East County, was hit especially hard.
“Employees choosing to relocate, change occupations or remain at home have resulted in the loss of trained personnel,” Pilson said.
Manatee County has extended landfill hours to allow collection along routes later into the day. Waste Management has been keeping records on a daily basis of the scheduled routes that are missed and have notified Manatee County when collections have been completed.
Pilson said residents have been asked to leave their garbage, recycling and yard waste out until 7 p.m. on the scheduled collection day. If it is not collected by then, they should bring it back in and put it out again prior to 6 a.m. the next morning as the collections are being resumed where they left off the day before.
She said the process has worked well for the most part, but with a few challenges because of recent holidays.
“We continue to work with Waste Management to allow it some additional time to get its new employees hired and trained before any alternative solutions are implemented that would require significant changes to current levels of service (number of collections a week, days of service, etc.),” she said. “It remains a priority to restore service to the standards our customers have come to rely on.”
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