Disrupting Collection with Multi-Community Contracts


Often times when negotiating with communities, collection contractors have the upper hand in deciding final prices for their services.

One reason is because of a lack of competition in the area, leaving the community with only one price option. The community’s characteristics may be difficult for haulers to provide affordable services, uch as in small, rural, remote locations. Additionally, the cost of disposal and recycling processing services in the area may increase the cost of collection.

What is a community to do when these situations occur? Take the best offer and have residents and/or the community pay high prices for services? Or forego services altogether? Neither seems like a good option.

That is where consortiums come in.


What is a Consortium?

A consortium is an association of communities that come together to jointly bid on a solid waste collection contractor. Consortiums strengthen communities’ bidding power when negotiating with haulers and other contractors. The purchasing power of the larger combined population can ensure a fair and consistent price for solid waste services.

The only catch is that a consortium involves multiple communities cooperating as one.


Are There Risks?

Yes. That is why it’s important to choose the right partners, set reasonable expectations, and prepare to give and take.


Are There Rewards?

Yes! When communities are able to work together, their cooperation pays off. Between the speakers for SWANApalooza’s “Disrupting Collection with Multi-Community Contracts,” they have saved millions of dollars for residents and communities by organizing consortiums in different regions of Ohio.


Consortiums provide other benefits to communities in addition to cost savings. Cooperating within a consortium gives communities the opportunity for:

  • Special services (i.e. bulk pick-up)
  • Yard waste service
  • Reduced truck traffic
  • Residents have choice of cart size for family needs
  • Consortium Committee regularly reviews issues
  • Municipal buildings receive solid waste services at no cost
  • Service for municipal special events
  • County or Solid Waste Management District provides bidding and public notice services
  • Legal and consulting services


What Can My Community or Organization Get Out of this SWANApalooza Session?

Checklist – Learn the tools to best prepare yourself and your community for the consortium process from building trust, creating a joint bid, and avoiding common mistakes.

Decision Making Tools – Where do you start? What path do you take? How do you know when to lean in and when to step out?

Real World Anecdotes – Find out how much your community and partners can save (in money, time, and frustration) when carried out correctly. Find out challenges that communities have faced and how they overcame them.

Learning Through Experience – This session at SWANApalooza will incorporate experiential learning with an interactive presentation to understand the many different sides and points of view in working in consortiums.


Don't miss "Disrupting Collection with Cooperative Multi-Community Contracts" at SWANApalooza 2020 in Atlanta, GA, on March 25 at 11:00 AM - 11:45 AM.