Republic Services acquires KWS, now servicing Glen Rose

Jay Hinton
Glen Rose Reporter

GLEN ROSE — This week, the city of Glen Rose will begin the second month with Republic Services as its new solid waste service provider, and so far it appears the transition has been a smooth one.

“I’ve heard my staff say they like working with Republic,” Glen Rose City Administrator Michael Leamons said. “I haven't heard any complaints from the public, so that's a good sign.”

In a letter dated Oct. 29, the city received notice from Knox Waste Services stating it was selling all its assets (equipment, accounts, etc.) to Republic Services and asked that the Glen Rose City Council approve the transferring of the KWS contract to Republic in its meeting on Nov. 16.

The council had three options: approve the transfer; attempt to renegotiate the terms of the contract; or stay with KWS and force it to continue with the agreement until fulfillment in two years.

Because the city and its residents have been less than happy with the service from KWS, councilman Chip Joslin and councilwoman Kelly Harris questioned whether or not the city would have the opportunity to renegotiate the current terms of the contract.

“I have been against Knox since the beginning,” councilwoman Julia Douglas said. “I have gone over the contracts time and time again to try to find loop holes to get us out of it. I have never been happy with their services.”

Vince Rable, a representative of Republic Services, the second-largest waste management service in the United States, said there would be no renegotiation at this point because the sale of KWS had not been officially finalized and he didn’t have the authority to renegotiate, but he did say they could revisit it in down the road after Republic officially acquired KWS.

“Give us six months to get our bearings and get everything straightened out and then if we want to have discussions about different services — prices, longer contract terms — we can have those discussions,” he said at the council meeting.

Councilman Johnny Martin was concerned that if the council didn’t approve the contract transfer and forced KWS to continue, there would be too much uncertainly about the level of service the city would receive and was worried it could get worse than it already is.

Rable told the council that Republic has around 200 municipality contacts in the state of Texas and has had a contract with the city of Arlington since 1951 and the city has never sent out for a new bid, and the same goes for the city of Grand Prairie, which has been with Republic since 1961.

Rable said Republic, which has a landfill in Itasca less than 50 miles from Glen Rose, was acquiring all of the KWS assets and if the city didn’t approve the transfer, Glen Rose would be the only city still under a KWS contract. He said KWS had 28-30 city contracts.

“I feel like it would be in the city’s best interest to go ahead,” Martin said.

The council approved the move, 4-1, with Joslin opposing, stating the city needed to do its due diligence concerning Republic Services before approving the transfer.

Republic officially began providing the service in Glen Rose on Nov. 30.