Mary Farris has called the 311 center about Augusta's trash service. Her latest complaint? Some bulk trash that wasn't picked up Tuesday on Melrose Drive. “They left all that cardboard down there to blow all over the neighborhood because it won't go in the bin,” she said.
People slamming the trash service are slamming Augusta's 311 call center…1,300 calls a day, many about missed service. But, there's also been a huge number of requests coming in about recycle bins.
“I would probably say 50 to 60 percent are recycling requests,” says Kelli Walker, who is the 311 call center's manager.
And, all those calls increase the workload for operators and tie up lines. “Definitely, it does,” says Walker.
And, that increases Demarco Jones' workload; his company is delivering the recycle bins, to trash customers.
Before once-a-week pickup started last week, the city was getting 15 to 20 calls a month for recycle bins, but that number has now exploded.
“One hundred fifty to one hundred sixty calls coming in a day. With a three man crew, maybe we're doing 50 to 60 per crew so were trying to catch up right now,” said Jones.
Jones is delivering both recycle bins and extra trash cans that's what he dropped off at Anglia Smith's house. Wthout twice-a-week pickup, she needs more space. “It's too much for once a week and, with my husband being on life support, we use a lot of trash and we have so much piled up,” she said.
The work is piling up on Demarco Jones. He's not picking up trash, he's delivering recycle carts, and like the regular trash service, it isn't easy keeping up with demand. “Yeah, but they'll be caught up real soon. They're going to love it when we get done,” he said.