Chapter 2A. Adjustment of Refuse Collection Rates

Sec. 5-2A.01 Rate application.

Any proposal for a change in the existing rates shall be submitted by application filed with the City Engineer/ Public Works Director. The application shall set forth the specific changes requested in rates or conditions of service, and it shall be accompanied by a complete written statement, with supporting schedules and exhibits, of all facts, data and information relied upon by the applicant in support of the requested changes. Any such application filed by the contractor under the agreement between the City of Hercules and Richmond Sanitary Services entered into September 10, 1986, shall include the following:

(a) Financial statements, audited if available, for the contractor’s full refuse collection and disposal operations, including income statement and end-of-year balance sheet, for the contractor’s most recent completed fiscal year;

(b) Contractor’s income statement for its full refuse collection and disposal operations (audited or unaudited) for the period from the end of the period covered by the financial statements required by item (a) above, to the month ended no more than forty-five days prior to the filing of the application, and its balance sheet as of the same month end;

(c) A projected income statement for the contractor’s full refuse collection and disposal operations, prepared in accordance with generally accepted accounting principles, for the twelve months beginning with the date at which the change in rates is proposed to become effective, showing pro-forma net operating results for the contractor’s refuse collection and disposal operations at the proposed rates and at the rates in effect at the time the application is filed;

(d) A schedule in support of the projected income statement required by item (c), above, which reconciles all differences in projected revenues and operating expenses from those reflected in the financial statements submitted in response to items (a) and (b) above, including a statement of all pertinent assumptions on which the projection is based and a showing as to the reasonableness of such assumptions;

(e) An allocation of the projected operating results provided in response to item (c), above, segregated as between services provided by the contractor to and within the City of Hercules and services provided by the contractor in and for other communities, with a statement of all factors used in making that allocation:

(f) A statement of the contractor’s costs used in making the projections of operating results required by items (c) and (e), above, segregated as between costs of collection, transportation to disposal facility (transfer station or landfill site), processing and handling at any transfer station, landfill disposal, landfill closure, and administrative costs;

(g) A schedule of rates for refuse collection services currently in effect in other municipalities in Contra Costa County and other counties in close proximity to the City of Hercules where similar disposal methods are used and the wage scales for employees of the companies providing the refuse collection services are the same or close to the same as those of the contractor,

(h) A statement of whether or not the rates proposed by the contractor are or will be more than 1.2 times the rates charged for the same or similar services in neighboring cities and municipalities to the City of Hercules; and

(i) Such other data as the contractor may wish to offer in support of its application.

All material submitted in support of any application for a change in rates shall be submitted in such formats and detail, with supporting statistics, as may from time to time be prescribed by the City Engineer/Public Works Director and shall be submitted with verification under penalty of perjury. Any application not meeting all of the foregoing requirements shall not be accepted for filing by the City Engineer/Public Works Director. (Ord. 285 Div. 1 (part), 1989)

Sec. 5-2A.02 Consultants.

Upon the acceptance for filing of any application for a change in rates for refuse collection services, the City Manager is authorized, subject to budget approval, to employ such consulting services as may be deemed appropriate by the City Manager to review the data provided in support of the application, to conduct appropriate further studies, and to advise the City as to the reasonableness of the proposed rate changes. The consultant may request of the contractor any further data with respect to its operations as may be necessary or appropriate to make possible a recommendation to the City on the rate application. The fees charged for any such consulting services shall be added to the revenue requirement of the contractor to be allowed as costs for setting rates in the City, and upon final action of the City Council on any rate application filed by the contractor, the contractor shall remit to the City the amount of consulting costs so allowed. (Ord. 285 Div. 1 (part), 1989)

Sec. 5-2A.03 Hearing procedure.

(a) Within thirty (30) days after the acceptance for filing of an application for change in rates or conditions of service, a public hearing upon the application shall be commenced by the City Engineer/ Public Works Director who shall, not less than twenty (20) days in advance of such hearing, cause to be published at least once in a newspaper of general circulation within the City of Hercules notice of the time and place thereof. The City Engineer/Public Works Director is empowered to make or cause to be made such studies and investigations as may be deemed pertinent to the application, to continue the hearing from time to time for that purpose and to introduce the results of such studies and investigations in evidence, including the report of any consultant employed pursuant to Section 5-2A.02, above. The applicant and any other person, firm or corporation affected by the application shall be entitled to appear at the hearing or any continuance thereof and be heard in accordance with hearing procedures to be prescribed by the City Engineer/Public Works Director. Any such affected person, firm or corporation desiring notice of further proceedings or action on the application may file with the City Engineer/Public Works Director a written request for such notice, setting forth the name and address to which such notice should be mailed.

(b) Upon the conclusion of the hearing and within ninety (90) days after acceptance for filing of the application, the City Engineer/Public Works Director shall submit a report and recommended order to the City Manager who shall promptly forward the report and recommended order to the City Council with endorsement and comments subscribed thereon. The report and recommended order shall set forth the facts as found from the evidence taken and record made at the hearing. The report shall also include the recommendations of any consultant employed pursuant to Section 5-2A.02, above. If the recommended order provides for any change in the rates, schedules, regulations or conditions of service then in effect, it shall also set forth the recommended date upon which the change is to take effect, which date shall be not less than twenty-five (25) days from the date of submission of the report and recommended order to the city council. The city clerk shall publish the recommended order, together with notice of filing thereof, in a newspaper of general circulation within the City of Hercules, and shall mail notice of the submission of the report and recommended order to the applicant and to any others who shall have filed written requests for notice as provided above. (Ord. 285 Div. 1 (part), 1989)

Sec. 5-2A.04 Action by City Council.

At any time within fifteen (15) days after submission of the report and recommended order to the City Council, the applicant or any person, firm or corporation affected by the recommended order may file with the City Clerk objections to the recommended order. Upon not less than ten (10) days’ notice by mail to the applicant, those filing objections to the recommended order and to others who shall have filed written request for notice as provided in Section 5-2A.03, the City Council shall hear argument upon the objections so filed. No new evidence shall be received by the City Council. After so hearing any such objections, or if no such objections are filed, the City Council shall by resolution, upon the basis of the evidence taken and record made at the hearing conducted by the City Engineer/Public Works Director, grant or deny the application in whole or in part and shall make such order, to take effect at such time, as may be just and reasonable. (Ord. 285 Div. 1 (part), 1989)

Sec. 5-2A.05 Renewal of Application.

An application denied in whole or in part may not be renewed for a period of one year from the date of its filing in the absence of a showing by the applicant of an intervening change in conditions which could not have been presented at the hearing conducted by the City Engineer/Public Works Director. (Ord. 285 Div. 1 (part), 1989)

Sec. 5-2A.06 Special Rate-Making Considerations.

(a) In setting rates for collection of refuse, no allowance shall be made for recovery of any increased cost incurred or to be incurred by the contractor with respect to any change in the contractor’s method of refuse collection or disposal or with respect to any capital addition by the contractor which the contractor has not, prior to making such change or addition, submitted to the City for review and evaluation and received a written approval from the City Engineer/Public Works Director that making the proposed change or addition and incurring any increased cost associated therewith are in the best interest of the people of the City of Hercules.

(b) In any report and recommended order submitted to the City Council pursuant to this chapter, the City Engineer/Public Works Director shall include specific recommendations with respect to the following:

(1) The appropriateness of an inverted structure or other incentive design for refuse collection rates to encourage source separation, recycling and resource recovery activities;

(2) If the contractor has been authorized to conduct a recycling program within the City, a procedure for reporting of information on market prices for recycled material and possible adjustment of refuse collection rates between rate applications to reflect significant fluctuations in revenues received by the contractor for recycled materials;

(3) A requirement that any amount allowed in refuse collection rates for the cost of landfill closure incurred by the contractor be held in a special fund for distribution to the contractor only upon approval by the City after a showing of the reasonableness of such costs and their appropriate allocation to refuse collected within the City of Hercules and disposed of at the landfill;

(4) A definition and limitation of charges which are to be included as additional regulatory costs related to the cost of landfill closure; and

(5) Separate identification on bills sent to the contractor’s refuse collection customers of the portions of the bills which relate to the cost of refuse collection, disposal costs, transfer station costs, recycling subsidy, landfill closure funding, and regulatory and administrative costs. (Ord. 285 Div. 1 (part), 1989)

Sec. 5-2A.07 Curbside Recycling Program.

During the period until May 1, 1991, the foregoing procedures and requirements of this Chapter 5-2A shall not be applicable to a change in refuse collection rates to reflect only the incremental costs to the contractor for providing a curbside recycling program under the auspices of the West Contra Costa County Solid Waste Management Joint Powers Authority. Any such change in refuse collection rates shall be determined by agreement between the City and the contractor. No such changes in refuse collection rates shall remain in effect beyond May 1, 1991, without review and approval therefor in accordance with all of the provisions of this Chapter 5-2A. (Ord. 292 Div. 1, 1990)

Sec. 5-2A.08 Curbside Placement of Receptacles Required.

It is the duty of every owner of any premises in the City who is provided or whose tenants are provided a receptacle by the collector in accordance with Section 52.06 to place the receptacle(s) on the curb immediately in front of the premises on the regularly scheduled collection days established by the City or the collector for the collection of solid waste. The only exception to this requirement is when the owner or the tenant of the owner of the premises has reached an agreement with the collector for an alternative collection method which would relieve the owner or his/her tenant from the obligation of placing the receptacle at the curb. The collector shall examine the feasibility of curbside collection in each neighborhood of the City and shall provide appropriate collection services in all areas. The collector shall also evaluate expansion of existing recycling services including greenwaste collection and report results to the City.

The collector shall make appropriate alternative collection arrangements with physically challenged owners or physically challenged tenants. Therefore, any handicapped, senior citizen, or any other person who because of a physical ailment might reasonably not be able to comply with the current requirements may upon request, negotiate appropriate collection arrangements. (Ord. 347 § 1 (part), 1998)