The Carlisle Mosquito Online

Friday, January 24, 2003


NESWC views proposals for cheaper disposal

The North East Solid Waste Committee (NESWC) Board of Directors announced today that the NESWC Strategic Planning Committee has reached agreement with the Wheelabrator North Andover (WNA) negotiating team regarding a series of proposals addressing refuse disposal services for the member communities post-September 2005.

The 23 member communities currently deliver the portion of the municipal solid waste stream remaining after source reduction, recycling and composting to a waste-to-energy facility located in North Andover owned and operated by WNA. Under the terms of the existing service agreement, which runs through September 27, 2005, the NESWC communities are paying $145 per ton this year, which is among the highest disposal fee in the country. Under the terms of the proposed agreements, the disposal fee to be paid by the communities beginning in September 2005 will be less than half the amount they currently pay.

"The Strategic Planning Committee is pleased to present these proposals to

the NESWC Board of Directors and to the 23 member communities. There is

light at the end of the NESWC tunnel," said Robert Moroney, chairman of the board of directors. "These proposals represent a competitive option for the NESWC communities worthy of serious consideration by our members."

The proposals represent the culmination of a planning and negotiation process begun over three years ago by the NESWC Board of Directors looking at ways of mitigating the significant economic burden these 23 communities have faced over the past eighteen years. " Since entering into the existing service agreement, negotiated over twenty years ago by the state, the NESWC communities have been paying more than their sister municipalities for

disposal services," commented Shawn Worster, executive director of NESWC.

Over the remaining two and a half years, the NESWC communities will pay as much as twice to three times what their next-door neighbors pay. Now, with these proposals in hand, we at least have a chance to bring down future costs significantly beginning in FY 2006 to a level in line with the costs being paid by other municipalities. That will help our member communities plan for the future."

NESWC continues to pursue alternative solutions to further reduce the financial burden over the remaining term of the existing service agreement. Most of the remaining burden results from the back-end loading of the original debt obligation established by the 1983 financing. Today, the outstanding principal yet to be paid is approximately

$90 million.

The NESWC communities that deliver the non-recycled portion of their solid waste to the Wheelabrator North Andover Facility are: Acton, Andover, Arlington, Bedford, Belmont, Boxborough, Burlington, Carlisle, Dracut, Hamilton, Lexington, Lincoln, Manchester-by-the-Sea, North Andover, North Reading, Peabody, Tewksbury, Watertown, Wenham, Westford, West Newbury, Wilmington and Winchester.

2003 The Carlisle Mosquito