Rancho Palos Verdes City Council






Staff Coordinator: Lauren Ramezani, Sr. Administrative Analyst


  1. Consider responses to City's RFP for waste hauling services from Universal Waste Systems Inc.;
  2. Approve proposed services and rates for a 10-year contract with Universal Waste Systems, Inc. for exclusive residential solidwaste, recycling and greenwaste collection in service Area B; and
  3. Direct staff to finalize the draft agreement with Universal Waste Systems, Inc. incorporating the approved services and rates and continue the discussion of the item to December 5, 2006.


Staff recommends accepting the attached proposed services and rates from Universal Waste Systems, Inc. (UWS) for residential Service Area B. UWS did not propose on commercial services, and hence will not be able to offer rolloff services starting in July 1, 2007. The summary of rates listed below is the recommended rates after reviewing and clarifying the UWS’s proposal.

The City’s trash subcommittee, staff and the City consultant compared the recommended price with other cities (with comparable services) and were satisfied with the results. Additionally, based on the feedback from residents (in person, letters, etc.) the services provided by UWS (dba Ivy Rubbish) are considered unique, and residents requested to keep UWS as the City’s residential hauler for Area B.

A summary of rates representing the majority of UWS’s customers is in Table 1. UWS did not increase its rates since July 2005. These proposed rates are an increase of approximately 13-19% over the current rates to cover the increased cost for fuel, landfill disposal and new carts and truck expenses.

Table 1
Comparison of UWS’s Current, Proposed Monthly Rates *

No. of Customers

Service Level

Current Monthly Rate

Proposed Monthly Rate


Twice/week Curbside




Twice/week Backyard




Once/week Backyard




Additional Bulky Waste Collection

(over 3 /year)

(over 4/year)


Senior Discount




Annual Pre-Payment Discount



* A complete list of UWS’s proposed rates is attached to the staff report, Attachment 1


The City currently has two exclusive residential franchise agreements: one with Waste Management of Los Angeles (Area A) and the other with Universal Waste Systems, Inc. (Area B). Both agreements expire on June 30, 2007. The City has the option to extend the residential franchise agreements in one-year increments, a maximum of three times.

On February 7, 2006, the City Council directed staff to work with the City’s Residential Trash/Waste Hauling Contract Ad Hoc Committee (trash subcommittee) to develop options, with City Council and public input, for future contract negotiations and service alternatives. The subcommittee met on March 29, 2006, and recommended to issue a Request for Proposals.

On May 16, 2006, the City Council authorized R3 Consulting, Inc. to prepare a Request for Proposals (RFP) for residential and commercial solid waste and recycling services and assist the City in the evaluation processes, and directed staff to prepare and present a draft RFP back to Council. On June 6, 2006, the City Council authorized staff to finalize the Request for Proposals and circulate the RFP.


The RFP was released on June 14, 2006. Proposals were due on September 12, 2006.

The RFP had various service options and requested proposals to include:

  • Rates for both once and twice a week trash collection
  • Rates for both flat and variable monthly fee structure, and
  • Rates for both one exclusive commercial hauler and for up to four commercial haulers

A mandatory pre-proposal meeting was held on June 29, 2006. A total of 20 different large and small hauling companies attended the meeting. A mandatory site walk, (a drive-thru to different areas of the City, including the Portuguese Bend landslide areas and Portuguese Bend Club and WM’s Pup route areas) was also conducted that same day.

Due to the complexity of the proposals, time needed to calculated all the cost options, and requests from both WM and UWS, the proposal due date was changed to September 26, 2006.

In April 2005, the City initiated two automated 3-cart pilot programs in WM’s service Area A (one in the eastside and one in the Westside of RPV). These two successful pilot programs allowed the City to see if (and how) a cart system would work in RPV, and how to deal with issues of steep streets, lack of curb space, cart placement and storage, cart delivery, etc. A survey sent to the pilot area showed an 86% satisfaction rate by the respondents. The pup route area (due to narrow streets, etc) was not part of the pilot program.

On September 26, 2006, the City received proposals for the City’s RFP for residential and commercial trash and recycling services. Despite intensive effort from staff and City consultant, and substantial initial interest from various haulers, only two haulers responded with proposals.

One proposal was from Universal Waste Systems, Inc. (UWS) for residential collection in Service Area B, and the other from Waste Management (WM) for residential collection in Service Area A, and for Citywide commercial collection. The proposals from both companies were checked, and found to be complete and in conformity with the City’s RFP submittal requirements. Interviews were conducted with both companies on October 3, 2006.

Several haulers (Allied/BFI, Burrtec, Consolidated, etc) that had attended the pre-proposal meeting, but had not proposed, were contacted. They said the reason for not proposing was:

  • The current collection rates are low and cannot be matched.
  • Because the City Council has the option to extend the current contracts and the current customer rates are low, potential vendors believed the City Council would extend the current contracts rather than enter into new contracts at higher rates.
  • The RPV service area is difficult area to provide cost effective services is due to topography access, and distance to solid waste facilities.
  • The trash hauling industry is focusing on profitably over increasing market share.
  • The RFP contained multiple service and price options that resulted in a complex proposal. Haulers would have to provide up to 32 different proposed rates. Therefore, haulers were not sure if all their proposal preparation time and cost would lead to results.

EXTENSION OPTION: The City’s current contract with UWS allows the City to unilaterally extend UWS’s contract for up to 3 years. UWS was agreeable to either an extension or a new contract.

COMMUNITY MEETINGS: Several community meetings were organized to inform residents of the items and requested services in the RFP, and to get feedback and comments. On July 13, 2006, two meetings were held; one meeting during the day (for businesses) and a second one in the evening (for WM customers). On July 17, 2006 a meeting was held in the evening for UWS customers. Staff and the City consultant also attended the September 20, 2006 Council of HOA (CHOA) meeting and informed HOA representatives of the items in the RFP.


Term: The Franchise Agreement is a 10 -year initial term, plus the option for three annual extensions, upon mutual agreement. This would be the same length of time as the WM proposed contract.

Exclusive Services: The residential contracts are similar to current services. Service Area A (current WM area) and Service Area B (current UWS area). The commercial (including rolloff) services would be exclusive to WM in both Areas A & B. UWS will not be able to offer rolloff services.

Frequency of Collection: Similar to now, twice/week collection of trash, with once/week collection of recyclables and green waste. Similar to now, trash and recyclables will be picked up on the first collection day, and trash and green waste picked up on the second collection day. The RFP requested collection of all recycling

materials on the first pickup of the week. UWS proposed to keep the recycling collections as is and not to make changes.

UWS has once a week back yard and twice a week curbside and backyard collection. It is recommended keeping the frequencies of collection as is.

Method of Collection: UWS proposed semi- automated (for curbside) 3-cart collection with choices of 32, 64, and 96 gallon cart sizes and manual collection (for backyard). The same truck will be able to handle both collection types.

Residential Containers: Backyard customers, Portuguese Bend Club (PBC), and Portuguese Bend area streets due to lack of space, topographic or other street challenges will receive new 32 gallon manual cans, not carts. This will allow the driver/helper to safely and easily lift the cans and empty them into the truck.

UWS will provide new carts for trash, recyclables, and green waste collection for curbside customers. These carts are sturdy, with stable wheel and with lids attached. Customers could choose from 32, 64, or 96 gallon containers depending on their individual needs, physical and space constraints. Customer will be provided an unlimited number of trash, recycling and green waste carts free of charge. The carts would be embossed with the City logo, and with the words "recyclables", "trash", or "green waste" (no stickers).

For uniformity purposes, UWS’s carts will be similar to WM’s proposed cart and carts currently in the WM pilot areas. Staff has received many positive comments back from WM’s pilot area residents about the quality, durability, manuverability and sturdiness of the carts. The carts would have a minimum 20% recycled material content, come with a 10-year warranty against defects, and malfunctioning/ defective carts would be replaced or repaired at no cost to the residents.

Single-Family Extra Green Waste Collection. Similar to now, residents will be allowed to set out bagged or bundled green waste at the curb for collection. Additionally, existing greenwaste cans may occasionally also be used (if necessary) However, residents will be encouraged not to use plastic bags due to possible rejection at some of the greenwaste processing facilities.

Single-Family Periodic Trash Overages. Residents will be allowed to set out trash "overage" in their own cans, or by the trash carts once every six weeks without the necessity of an additional hauler provided trash cart. This would help during holiday seasons, and spring or summer time garage/house cleanups.

Single-Family Backyard Collection. Similar to now, backyard collection would be provided on a subscription service for an additional fee, or at no additional fee if due to physical limitations (qualification criteria to be mutually agreed on between the City and hauler).

Single-Family Bulky Waste Collection. Curbside collection of bulky waste would be provided on an on-call basis 4/year, with a maximum set out of 5 cubic yards per collection. E-waste would be collected as part of bulky waste collection. Residents would not be allowed to place construction and demolition materials in regular collection carts, or at the curb as part of bulky waste collection. Curbside customers may request backyard collection of bulky waste for an additional fee.

Rate Structure: The recommended rates would be for FY 07-08. Staff recommends a flat rate structure with unlimited trash collection and unlimited number of containers. The flat rate offers more flexibility and would be more economical that UWS’s proposed variable rates. Additionally, it will keep the rate structure similar Citywide. The proposed variable rates (pay-as-you-throw) were: $27.97 for 35 gallon, $30.94 for 65 gallon, and $32.59 for 96 gallon. Each additional trash cart will cost $5.00 extra.

Collection Days: Collection will be made in 4 days instead of two to allow for the use pf a split body collection truck (see below). As a result, 50% of homes will keep their current collection schedule and 50% would have a new collection schedule.

Trucks: UWS will buy one new split body truck. The truck will be semi-automated. One side of the truck will be for trash and the other for recyclables (on recycling day) and green waste (on green waste day). The truck will have a maximum loaded weight of 33,000 pounds, and load capacity of 20 cubic yards. This new truck should reduce the stops per household from 4 per week to 2 per week. This will reduce wear and tear on the City streets.

Discounts: Senior citizen discount of 10% and annual prepayment discount of 7% will be provided. Seniors (residing in the house and head of household) would have to fill out an application in order to qualify, and renew the application once every 5 years.

Minimum Diversion Rate: UWS will be required to divert a minimum of fifty percent (50%) from the total of all single-family residential material collected under the scope of the exclusive franchise agreement. It the diversion requirement is not met, UWS would be required to implement additional recycling/waste reduction programs.

Collector Fee: UWS will be required to remit 10% of the gross revenue collected (quarterly) for providing residential services (estimated at $29,800/year as a Collector Fee. The gross revenue would include all revenue received from single-family, multi-family, and additional revenue received for push rates, extra collection services, service stop/start fees, and late fees. Including a percent of gross revenues instead of a fixed amount would more accurately reflect the revenue due to the City with future housing and commercial developments.

Recycling Fee: Similar to now, UWS will be required to make quarterly payments of 100% of the California Redemption Value (CRV) revenue received from the City’s overall recycling programs. The current estimated CRV payments are approximately $10,000 annually. This will be increased by $10,000 to help offset the cost of collection from City services provided by WM (UWS does not provide this service). This revenue is to help with the City’s Beautification Grants and median improvement projects.

Miscellaneous Grants and Rebates: Similar to now, UWS will reimburse the City for any grant monies or rebates (typically $1,500/year) the contractor receives from the State as a result of providing curbside recycling or other services to the City.

Infrastructure Maintenance Fee (Road repair/Maintenance Fee): After negotiations, this item was deleted in order to reduce rates. This was to be a new revenue source equaling a total of $320,000 Citywide, and was to offset the sharp increase in the cost of material (asphalt/concrete) to repair the City’s roads wear and tear (especially due to heavy trash trucks operating on the City’s streets).

Annual Rate Adjustments: The recommended rates are for FY 07-08. UWS has not had a rate increase since July 2005. The compensation paid to the contractor would be adjusted annually after that using a multi-indexed rate methodology that uses annual changes (increases or decreases) in five nationally published commodity and price indices. (i.e., diesel fuel, trash truck capital, trash truck driver labor, etc.), and changes in Los Angeles County landfill disposal charges. This should help properly reflect increase and avoid extraordinary rate increases.

Performance Bond: UWS would be required to submit a Performance Bond (renewed annually) in the amount of $50,000.

Insurance: UWS would be required to maintain minimum insurance coverage of $3 million for combined single limit per occurrence, $5 million for aggregate limit, $5 million for automobile/vehicles, $3 million for hazardous waste and environmental impairment liability, and worker’s compensation and employers’ liability at the statutory limits.

Liquidated Damages: The franchise agreement would contain liquidated damages ranging from $100 - $15,000 for non-compliance with specific contractual requirements.

Single-Family Used Oil Collection. Similar to now residents will be able to set out used oil and motor filters for collected weekly with used oil containers and filter bags provided by UWS at no cost.

Multi-Family Services. Multi-family services include both bin services to complexes. Multi-family bins would be available in 1– 6 cubic yards, and carts would be available in 32– 96 gallon capacity. The collection frequency would be based on the customer’s needs.

City Collection Services. UWS does not offer City collection services. Instead they will be required to pay the City an additional $10,000/year Recycling Fees to help offset the costs of providing collection from City facilities.

Billing Services. The contractor would continue to provide billing services to residents and businesses. For non-payment, UWS can reduce the level of service to the minimum, one trash cart/bin (no recycling, green waste collection, bulky waste, used oil, etc.), but must continue to provide trash collection. If services are reduced due to non-payment and payment is made later on, UWS may charge $50.00 fee to restore full service. The contractor may only collect past due amounts for non-payment for the prior 12 months, and the contractor may use a collection agency for past due accounts. The City is not responsible for collecting past due accounts.

Hours and Days of Collection. Residential collection hours will be Monday – Friday from 7:00 a.m. – 6:00 p.m. Saturday collection is only allowed following a City-approved holiday, and collection on Saturday is limited to 9:00 a.m. – 4:00 p.m. UWS is subject to liquated damages ($1,000) if holiday collection is not done on the schedule approved by the City. Collection hours are further reduced to 3:00 p.m. around schools and high traffic areas in order to have the trucks out by end of the school day and before the afternoon rush hour.

Holiday Collection. There will be no collection on 6 major holidays: Christmas Day, New Year Day, Memorial Day, Independence Day, Labor Day and Thanksgiving Day. All holiday collection schedules or changes will have to be approved by the City.

Cart Distribution. New carts or containers will be distributed prior to July 2007. A detailed public education and schedule will be prepared a few months in advance. In areas with manual collection, the containers will be regular 32 gallon sizes. In areas with semi-automated collection, residents will select the cart sizes and quantity of carts per material. A default size of one 65 gallon cart per material will be delivered to homes that have not made a specific size selection. Any cart size changes/adjustments (if necessary) will be made 1-2 months after program implementation.


  1. Reject UWS’s proposal, and issue an extension notice for 1-3 years. However, staff does not recommend this since that could possibly make the future contract expiration date different than WM’s.
  2. Reject UWS’s proposal, and then issue another RFP. However, staff does not recommend this option. UWS’s rates are very competitive with rates offered for similar services at different cities.


Approving the proposed customer services, and rates, and the City fees would bring the following estimated revenues (from both Waste Management and UWS) to the City:

Revenue Source

(Both WM and UWS)

Current Rates Est.

Proposed Rates Est.

Fund Deposited In

Residential Collector Fee (10%)


(WM $332,000 +UWS $13,000)

$508,500 **

(WM $478,700 + UWS $29,800)

General Fund

Commercial Collector Fee (16%)



(WM $133,500 + UWS $0)

General Fund

Recycling Fee (100% of CRV)



(WM $221,000+ UWS $20,500)

Beautification Fund

State/DOC Cash Back Incentives



Waste Reduction Fund




* The current residential Collector Fee was a set amount based on calculations made in 1999, and it has not reflected the additional new homes or accounts. Additionally, in 1999 the Collector Fee was calculated and set based on rates that were substantially lower than the proposed 2007 rates.

** This increase in fees reflects the higher monthly rates, and additional new homes and developments.

The new agreement will be effective July 1, 2007. The total (from WM and UWS) estimated amount of $642,000 will be deposited in the General Fund, and total estimated amount of $283,000 in the Beautification Fund to continue the Beautification Grant and median improvement programs.

Respectfully Submitted:

Jim Bell, Director of Public Works

Reviewed by:

Les Evans, City Manager


UWS Proposed Rates -- July 1, 2007
Single-Family Residential Collection

Twice/week Curbside Collection


Once/week Curbside Collection


Subscription Back Yard Collection
(twice/week collection)

$25.30 + base rate/month

Subscription Back Yard Collection
(once/week collection)

$14.30 + base rate/month

Additional Large Item Collection (over 4 times/year)

$22.00/each collection

Back Yard Collection of Large Items

$10.00/each collection

Additional or Excess Cart Exchange

$11.00/each occurrence

Annual Pre-Payment Discount


Senior Discount


Manure Collection – 32 gallon cart

$22.75 for 1/week collection

Manure Collection –1.0 CY Bin

$71.50 for 1//week collection

Manure Collection –1.5 CY Bin

$77.00 for 1//week collection

Manure Collection – 2 CY Bin

$88.00 for 1/week collection

UWS Proposed Rates -- July 1, 2007
Multi-Family Residential Collection

Container Size

Collection Frequency

1X Week

2X Week

3X Week

4X Week

5X Week

6X Week

1 CY








1.5 CY








2 CY







3 CY








4 CY








5 CY








6 CY








20 CY








30 CY








40 CY








10 CY Lowboy
















Push Rates

0-25 ft

26-49 ft

50-75 ft

76-100 ft

101-125 ft

126+ ft







Cart or Bin Cleaning Each Occurrence


1 – 4 CY Bin

5+ CY Bin





UWS Proposed Rates -- July 1, 2007

Emergency Service Rates

Emergency Service Rates - Employees

Labor Position

Hourly Rate





Emergency Service Rates - Equipment

Equipment Type

Make & Model

Hourly Rate

Roll-off Trucks



Flat Beds



Front Loaders



Rear Loaders



Portable Restrooms