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Brookfield panel debates up-the-drive vs. curbside garbage collection

Aug. 13, 2014

The city of Brookfield's Public Works Committee took its first step toward deciding the future of residents' waste removal Tuesday night.

Debate was between the convenience of up-the-drive collection against the potential savings of curbside service.

"I think the city of Brookfield has historically, and continues to, provide a high level of service to residents," Mayor Steve Ponto said. "Up-the-drive service is convenient. I think (citizens) would see any backing off of that as a diminution of (services)."

Alderman Scott Berg played the role of devil's advocate, noting that higher level of service means higher taxes.

"There's always more than one side. There's no doubt in my mind that the number for picking it up on the curb will be less than for going up the drive," Berg said. "There's a give and take here."

City of Brookfield Director of Public Works Tom Grisa acknowledged on Monday that curbside is generally less expensive than up-the-drive service. He also noted that the city would be able to maintain a similar up-the-drive service as it currently enjoys for a comparable cost moving forward. The committee declined to discuss actual cost figures during open session.

"The county has asked that we don't (discuss price) because the moment somebody does, everyone starts negotiating," Grisa said.

No action was taken Tuesday night. The topic will be discussed again next Tuesday at the city's Common Council meeting.

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