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Fort Wayne leaders not looking at material default with garbage company

Fort Wayne administration announced they are not looking at a breach of contract yet with Red River Waste Solutions.

Leaders from various Fort Wayne divisions met with Red River Waste Solutions today to give an update on the garbage and recycling collection efforts.

Over the past several months, our viewers have shared their frustrations with us over missed trash pickups by waste collector Red River Waste Solutions. Last week, city councilman Russ Jehl said it was time for the city to act, introducing a resolution that would hold Red River in breach of its contract with the city.

READ MORE: Fort Wayne councilman introduces breach of contract resolution against Red River

The city administration says the city council resolution would not result in formal action. It is only a statement of the view of the situation only by those members who sign it. The administration indicated it will not pursue a declaration of material default Tuesday, saying they do not believe the contractor has met the threshold for a material default.

The city points out examples from other jurisdictions showing many factors determine how material defaults occur. This includes a provider abandoning the duties of collecting any materials and not meeting payroll to name a few.

The administration also said a default designation could have the potential to lead to legal fees being incurred by the City and increased costs to customers through a different collection contractor. A court would likely determine if a material default has occurred.

“We expect more and are demanding more from Red River,” said Mayor Henry. “We’re focused on and committed to ensuring Red River provides the best and most reliable services possible. I understand the frustration that many people are feeling right now. Meeting the basic needs of our residents and neighborhoods is critical to Fort Wayne’s success. We’re going to make this right. By working together, we can make a meaningful difference and restore the public’s trust in the garbage and recycling process in our City.”

The city continues to fine Red River for not meeting certain benchmarks as outlined in the garbage and recycling contract. The most recent fine was a $92,000 fine in June. Fines for July have not been finalized. These fines will go to provide for neighborhood clean-ups and to reduce the need for future rate increases.

Red River says there are some action items that need to be implemented. this includes bringing in more drivers and analyzing route and collection data.

Highlights of action items to be implemented:

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