This little pile of wannabe compost has been adorning the curb alongside my garage for more than three weeks. The old carpeting was placed there the week after the last trash collection, so I knew it would be another week before the trash trucks came back around through my neighborhood. Then, the following week when the trash trucks were expected to come through, the four bags of lawn clippings were placed atop the old carpeting. But no trash trucks came into or through my neighborhood that week. And for that matter, I haven’t seen one in my neighborhood since the last time around. I see them elsewhere in the city, but not in my area. This all leads me to ask questions.
Okay, Port Arthur, so what’s the excuse this time? Last time it was garbage and trash trucks breaking down faster than they could be repaired, or that an infestation of rats at the City Service Center were chewing through hydraulic hoses. Be that as it may, it sure is strange how all those problems just seemed to disappear overnight as the city began purchasing new trucks and equipment. In fact, so miraculous was the change that I have to ask what method the city used to eradicate those pesky rats because surely there are others around Port Arthur who’d like o know so we can rid ourselves of critters, too?
All I can say is that I strongly suspect the Solid Waste Department isn’t managed any more productively than is the Water Utilities Department; and, I have more than enough reason to know the Water Utilities Department was a best-case-scenario for mismanagement. In the case of the Solid Waste Department, let me say that the most prominent evidence of mismanagement has to do with the garbage toters that were distributed to all city residences.
You know, these things! When the City of Port Arthur first adopted the plan to replace individual garbage cans with these toters, as the toters were distributed one to each residence, the serial number of the respective toter was recorded with the street address of where that toter was placed. Great idea, but one that fell short as soon as our area was struck by several severe storms and hurricanes. I guess that registry somehow got lost in all those storms because the adverse weather blew those toters all over the place. The end result is that some residences didn’t have any at all while others had two, three, four or more toters.
Instead of relying on the initial registry list to determine what toters belonged where, in response to those whose toter had disappeared altogether the City simply bought more toters. Only this time all they did was drop the replacements off without recording their distribution whatsoever. I guess it was just too much to expect from Solid Waste management to do such a responsible thing, huh? Well, after the same thing happened after more severe weather, once again instead of trying to determine who had want toter(s) and where they belonged, the City bought even more toters. See a cycle of laziness here that’s costing the few remaining taxpayers of this city even more? People, I sure do.
I think it would be nice when the citizens of Port Arthur wouldn’t have to jump through all sorts of hoops just to see the City Manager, and I think there are some things the City Manager should be aware of. But that’s another story for another time. The fact is that all the outsourcing in the world isn’t going to help Port Arthur with its departmental mismanagement. It’s like trying to convince City Council to audit every single department as opposed to only a couple. All we’d hear about is all the crying and whining about how it all costs too much for those audits, but then again the Mayor and City Council members haven’t any problem with all the money being wasted through departmental inefficiency and waste.