In Box: Regarding Scott Peotter’s ‘Concierge Trash’ column

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Nothing like throwing an IED into a room and walking out. Everyone is entitled to their opinion but Scott Peotter is way off base with his slanted views on “Concierge Trash” (Aug 30, 2013).

Did Mr. Peotter stop and think that perhaps many residents happen to like the present service, want to keep it and, if necessary, are willing to pay more for it?

A survey taken of the residents of Corona del Mar’s Cameo Community Association in January 2013 reveals the following:

–93 percent of the responding residents (146 out of 319) preferred the current system.

–126 preferred the present recycle system (89.4 percent).

–116 (83.5 percent) would pay more for the present system.

The survey allowed for comments which generated 16 pages of support for the present method.

That survey was taken after presenting the facts as gathered from the nooks and crannies of various statements made by city council members, staff and consultants.


The present recycle rate in Newport Beach is currently 70 percent (41 percent residential and 29 percent commercial). The city tried to use scare tactics insisting that California requires 75 percent. What they do not tell you is that metric is required by 2020. So we need 5 percent in seven years. Tell the commercial operators to match the residential and that’ll put us way over the top.

Since you are publishing opinions, let me add mine on the recycle problem. Some residents want to do their own recycling and also teach their youngsters the value of recycling. That is admirable, very civic-minded and environmentally sound. My suggestion is to distribute recycling plastic bags that the homeowner can use to accumulate cans, glass, etc., and put it out for a normal collection. When the trash arrives at the transfer station the workers can easily target those bags, saving them both time and money with the added benefit of raising our recycle percentage.

Peotter writes that the NB trash trucks have to convert to natural gas and that would be very expensive. At a City Council TV broadcast of the trash issue earlier this year, one of the city council members blurted out that building a natural gas filling station could cost NB millions.

Again, the facts. By city manager admission, NB has six million dollars in reserve to buy new trash equipment. Trash equipment only – not to be used for anything else. Someone should ask the question, “where is that money going if the city outsources?”

From this property taxpayer’s view it had better not go to paying down the debt of the new City Hall or uncontrolled salary increases.

Oh yes, the natural gas filling station. Newport Beach already has one on Superior Avenue. But the damage of false information publicized on TV is what the public remembers (sort of like the Newport Indy).

Did you know that the Refuse Workers are FEMA trained for natural disasters? Many of them are trained to give CPR. Try that with the outsourced employees.

Two of the bidding companies have owners that live in Corona del Mar and Santa Ana Heights. So those two council persons will be under tremendous pressure.

There is no comparison of the street sweeping being outsourced and the Refuse Department. What’s next, outsource the police to the OC Sheriff and fire services to OC Fire?

You might want to change Mr. Peotter’s column banner to “The Semi-Straight Scott.”

The solution to all of this is to remove the decision from the City Council and move it to where it belongs – a City-wide referendum to be voted on by the property owners.

Robert A. Pastore

Cameo Highlands

Corona del Mar


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  1. The council seems to have already decided. This mayor works for a financial company that oversees finances and bonds for Municipalities.
    Mr. Henn was brought to California from Chicago to outsource Vons.
    They have decided to change the numbers on the NB employee’s proposal; I don’t think they are even going to I include it in tomorrow night’s council meeting along with Ware and CR&R.
    They are lying about the $17 million dollar savings.
    If they vote tomorrow night, considering the propoals were just published Wednesday, there is something seriously wrong here.