RUMFORD — Residents of Dixfield, Mexico, Peru and Rumford will vote June 11 on whether to renew an agreement with Northern Oxford Regional Solid Waste Inc. for another 20 years.

Byron and Roxbury voters have approved the pact to continue using the transfer station and recycling center on Route 2 in Mexico.

John Madigan of Rumford, administrator of the solid waste board, said the 1999 contract expires in October and there are no changes to the new one.

“All we did was update dates,” he told the board at its April 16 meeting. “The next change will depend on whatever population shift comes out of the 2020 census.”

Assessments to member towns are based on their population.

“Because we’re able to sell all the cardboard, all the metal, etc. on the recycling, we’re making just about enough to break even on the budget,” he said. “We don’t budget the revenues, so that money goes into the general fund, which is available to reduce the cost to the towns every year.

Eric Schmersal, manager of the Northern Oxford Regional Solid Waste Transfer Station on Route 2 in Mexico, operates the baler. Rumford Falls Times file photo

“That’s why, on a million-dollar budget, we only charge the towns $800,000,” he said. “The rest of it comes from our own fund balance. We used it this year, but then because of the new revenue for the next year, we make it back up again and are able to use it again. And we’ve done that for nine or 10 years in a row now.”

Madigan said recycling revenue is generally just over $100,000.

“And we take more than just the trash,” board Chairwoman Patty Duguay of Byron said. “We take the food waste, the clothing, metals, bulky waste, hazardous waste.”

According to at least one board member, Dixfield selectmen discussed asking for a shorter contract and looking at alternatives for solid waste disposal.

“This is amazing that they would even question this, because we’ve been doing this for 40 years now,” Madigan said. “If they saw the 10-year spreadsheet that we do at budget time, it shows no increases over 10 years.”

Madigan also addressed the contract with Waste Management, which runs the Norridgewock landfill where the solid waste corporation takes its material. The five-year contract expires in 2020.

“We’re in a good spot with the landfill because they know we can go to Berlin (New Hampshire) and cut them out of $300,000 to $400,000 a year,” he said. “The last contract we negotiated, they went back to the original contract of five years earlier, the same price.”

He said the solid waste corporation pays about $54 per ton for a tipping fee.

Madigan, who is Rangeley’s town manager, said that community just signed a five-year contract with a $79 per ton tipping fee for the Norridgewock landfill.

Speaking about the solid waste board’s assets, Madigan said they are easily worth $1 million.

“We have four good trailers and they’re like $75,000 to $80,000 apiece,” he said. “We just replaced the compactor. We got almost 40 years out of the last one. We just replaced the baler. The buildings are in good shape. All the overhead doors are working good.”

He said the Bobcat loader will probably have to be replaced in a year or two.

In another matter, Duguay announced household hazardous waste will be collected from 9 a.m. to noon Saturday, June 22, at the Region 9 School of Applied Technology on Route 2 in Mexico. Androscoggin Valley Council of Governments is coordinating it.

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