- Associated Press - Wednesday, March 4, 2015

ANCHORAGE, Alaska (AP) - Anchorage Mayor Dan Sullivan’s administration is seeking the official go-ahead to set up a process to sell the city’s trash-collection utility.

A public hearing on the matter has been set for April 28.

Sullivan’s administration introduced a resolution on the issue Tuesday at the Anchorage Assembly meeting, the Alaska Dispatch News (https://is.gd/6XRUfZ), an Anchorage newspaper, reported. The resolution calls for setting up a process to sell the collection business of Solid Waste Services.

The utility also operates the Anchorage Regional Landfill and two waste-transfer stations. Those would not be included in the selling process.

A sale is not imminent, Sullivan said. His administration is seeking guidelines from the assembly in case the city proceeds with a sale, he said.

“It’s a big decision,” Sullivan said. During his time in office, unsolicited private bids to purchase the trash collection service have been submitted to the city, he said.

City union leaders criticized the resolution, which comes four months before Sullivan is set to leave office.

Anchorage Municipal Employees Association President Jillanne Inglis said the concerns include that jobs would be affected and collective-bargaining rights would be lost.

If the resolution wins the support of the assembly, the administration would seek an analysis of Solid Waste Services - including an assessment of the garbage collection utility’s value - to be conducted by a financial consultant, Sullivan said.

The administration would then proceed with the bidding process. The sale would be authorized by the assembly, which currently sets the rates for the utility.

“We’re not anticipating there would be any job loss. But that’s part of the evaluation you do, and make sure it makes sense for the city, ratepayers and taxpayers,” Sullivan said.

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Information from: Alaska Dispatch News, https://www.adn.com

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