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In one of the largest displays of public sentiment before the Batavia City Council, a standing-room-only crowd expressed overwhelming support for the Genesee ARC.

Of 16 people who addressed the City Council last night, 13 asked that the ARC continue to provide trash collection and recycling services as they have for the past 28 years.

City Council President Tim Buckley was asked if the comments had any impact on council.

“I’m sure it did," he said. "We’re all part of the community; most of us are lifetime members. We understand what they’re saying and we hear them loud and clear.”

Several speakers asked that the city wait another year with its pay-as-you throw trash plan and give the ARC a fair chance to compete with Allied/Republic Services, the Arizona based company that is the apparent low bidder to provide trash service in the city.

ARC Executive Director Donna Saskowski said her agency may lose the city contract but they are not going away.

“If they don’t choose us – and of course the council has to make the decision – and if they chose Allied, we’re probably out of the business with the city," Saskowski said. "But we’re not out of business. We’re going to be working with our commercial accounts and with the region to continue our recycling center.”

The city council is expected to take final action on the new trash contract next month.

A public hearing on next year’s city budget has been set for Feb. 11. That budget calls for a reduction in the tax rate but imposes a new trash collection fee, based on the size of plastic tote the property owner elects to use.

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