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Omaha city council votes ‘No’ on new recycling contract

Published: Oct. 20, 2020 at 8:39 PM CDT
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OMAHA, Neb. (WOWT) - No recycling contract for Omaha after the city council votes 3-4.

It’s been months of discussion leading up to this vote.

“I just find it interesting how we spend so much time and there will be so much talk, which I am doing right now to express to the people I’m going to save your tax dollars...very little on other topics,” Councilmember Rich Pahls said.

All that talk and Omaha came out empty-handed.

“I’m not confident that Nebraskaland will be able to fulfill the needs of our city,” Councilmember Amy Melton said. She ended up voting in favor of the contract.

Worries surrounding the Nebraska recycling contract were consistent across the board. There were concerns about the companies ability to keep up with demand, the length of the contract, and the location of the facility at 42nd and D St.

“There are some questions about that and questions about the proximity to a neighborhood I find concerning,” Councilmember Pete Festersen said.

Those in favor said this small smaller provided, Nebraskaland Recycling, should be given an opportunity to grow and expand its business. They see this contract as the way to do it.

“I believe the American way says give the small guy the chance to prove themselves,” Pahls said.

Mayor Jean Stothert has expressed her disappointment. She said this contract could have saved taxpayers $1 million annually.

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