Understanding the complexity of Waste Collection Contracts with our Waste Leader - Pat

Waste management is a core responsibility for local governments across the globe, but you might be surprised at the diversity of ways Peak can take the worry out of waste for your council.

Understanding the complexity of Waste Collection Contracts with our Waste Leader - Pat

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Management of waste has long been one of the essential services provided by councils from Queensland to Quebec. 

In simpler times rubbish was one of the ‘three Rs’ (along with rates and roads) but, just as the range of services provided by councils has expanded and diversified, so too have community expectations around waste management.  

The increased onus placed on Queensland councils to do more with waste – from recycling to waste transfer, reduced landfill and more – has created administrative headaches but also opportunities. 

Peak Services can provide councils with tailored, independent management consultation for the procurement of the right waste contractor for their needs. Our waste specialists consider the full range of contract conditions and tailor procurement to the council’s specific needs, resulting in a cost efficient, tailored waste collection/disposal service.  

This can include the development of comprehensive tender documents for the collection and disposal of general and recyclable waste. Peak will prepare tender documents including: 

  • information for tenderers 

  • conditions of tendering 

  • conditions of contract 

  • contract specification 

  • response schedules. 

To provide waste collection services, contractors need to invest heavily in plant and equipment, including collection vehicles, bins and facilities for processing, recovering and disposing of the waste and recyclables.  

Waste and recycling collection is costly – indeed, it is the single largest budget item for some councils. To further complicate things, contracts are often filled with very complex terms and conditions and are typically long-term (10+ years) and high value, so you can be ‘locked in’ to them. Some decisions can be political – for example, whether to contract in-house or to outsource – and there may be unknowns without ‘future proofing’ provisions in the current contract. 

So, it makes economic sense to have a council’s waste collection contracts professionally managed, ensuring community needs are met and the cost burden is taken care of. 

Peak’s experts will highlight all manner of critical service considerations, such as: 

  • council waste data (i.e. waste types, quantity and recyclable items) 

  • opportunities to minimise or avoid waste and maximise recycling 

  • locations of materials recovery facilities and waste disposal sites 

  • sundry other factors councils need to consider early in the tender process, including: start/finish dates and duration of the contract, bin sizes, number of residences serviced, collection frequency, contract inclusions, services to be delivered for the life of the contract, penalties for cancelling the contract, flexibility in servicing arrangements to suit changing waste, including recyclables, materials to be collected within the proposed service, contamination levels accepted by the recycling contractor and contractor’s responsibility for waste education. 

As you can see, waste is more complex than determining whether something is reusable, recyclable or goes to landfill. From getting the right conditions in your tender proposals through awarding and the ongoing management of contracts, we can help you take the guesswork out of waste. 

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If you would like to know more about this issue or anything waste related, contact Pat Pathmanathan on 0406 552 708 or via email spathmanathan@wearepeak.com.au.