Waste Management quietly purchased local waste hauler company Alli Rolloff Inc. (ARI) on Nov. 1. Customers were not notified prior to the sale being official, and many remained ignorant of the sale when Waste Management began picking up their trash on Monday, Nov. 4. City officials where Alli Rolloff had licenses also remained in the dark on the sale of the company.
Julie Ketchum, with Waste Management, said it is normal for customers not to be notified of a sale until after the deal is closed because anything can happen with the acquisition before it is final. She also pointed out customers of Alli Rolloff Inc. should be expecting notification coming in the mail early this week.
ARI was the only locally owned company that had trash hauler licenses in many area cities.
Alli Rolloff Inc. did not require their customers to sign service agreement contracts with the company. When asked if Waste Management (WM) would require a contract service agreement, Ketchum assured the Star Herald that WM will continue the no-contract policy for customers they acquired through this sale.
"In this instance we will not be requiring the residential customers to sign contracts with us," she said. "They will be free to discontinue our service at any time." She also said that the company had a rocky beginning in the accounting and billing department for customers that were Alli Rolloff customers but that issue has been resolved.
As for commercial customers, Ketchum said they are hoping to continue to offer the same great service Troy Andrist offered his customers and hope to retain the commercial customers with contracts.
"We will be sending out sales people to work with commercial customers," she said.
She emphasized that she sees the sale of Alli Rolloff to Waste Management as a very positive thing.
As for commercial customers, Ketchum said they are hoping to continue to offer the same great service Troy Andrist offered his customers and hope to retain the commercial customers with contracts. "We will be sending out sales people to work with commercial customers," she said.
She emphasized that she sees the sale of Alli Rolloff to Waste Management as a very positive thing, but not all are in agreement.
Troy Andrist, owner of Alli Rolloff said the selling of his business was not something he set out to do or something he had planned on doing. He was approached in September and after serious consideration he decided now was the time to sell. Due to the fifty percent solid waste tax increase in Olmsted County it was becoming harder and harder for him to stay competitive on the commercial side of his business. He said that increasing local competition was another deciding factor in the sale. With all the stress and working seven days a week, he said his wife was concerned he might have a heart attack.
"I really want to emphasize that I am so grateful and appreciative of the customers that I had," he explained. "It was a hard decision to make, not only for me but for my employees as well."
He has kept a few employees on to help with his mulch business and others went to be drivers with Waste Management. He feels WM offers a great benefit package for their employees. He also emphasized he's not going away, he is still helping customers and Waste Management with the transition and will continue to do so.
"I've been meeting with customers this past week and working with them," he said. "If anyone has any questions or concerns they can email me through our website and we will get back with them." The ARI web site is www.aridisposal.com.
When the Star Herald reached city officials in Pine Island to inquire about open trash hauler licenses trash hauler licenses in the city, deputy clerk Cindy Oelkers said she is personally disappointed with the sale. "ARI came to the city so residents would have a local option," she said. "We had been getting a lot of complaints on Waste Management." She said personally she has had issues with the company in the past and would not be returning as a customer. One complaint she related was that customers who signed up for automatic bill pay to avoid a monthly service charge found Waste Management withdrawing money from their accounts on dates other than the date due, so customers didn't know when the withdrawals would be made.
As for complaints since Waste Management has taken over ARI, she said there have been none. "We haven't had any complaints yet but I'm sure there will be some backlash," she said. Waste Management already had a license to haul garbage in Pine Island so the city now has one open license. Other companies licensed in the city are Advanced Disposal and GarbageMan.
Aside from Pine Island, Alli Rolloff had trash hauling licenses in Byron, Kasson, Mantorville, Dodge Center, Claremont, West Concord and Hayfield. With the buyout of ARI, these area cities currently have a license available.
Byron issues four trash haulers licenses. Currently Advanced Disposal, GarbageMan, Waste Management and Veolia are licensed in the city. Byron will not issue a fourth license until the new year.
Kasson has four licenses that they issue each year. Advanced Disposal, Garbage Man and Waste Management currently have licenses in the city. Kasson will not accept another application for the open license until the new year.
Hayfield issues three licenses each year. Currently, Waste Management and Skjeveland Enterprises are the only two licensed in the city. The city will accept applications for another hauling company.
Mantorville does not have a limit on the number of licenses they distribute but does require the haulers to be licensed through the county. Advanced Disposal and Waste Management are the only companies currently licensed in Mantorville.
Claremont does not license haulers and does not have a limit on the companies that haul trash within the city. Operating within the city right now are Waste Management and Skjeveland Enterprises.
West Concord only issues one license to operate within the city, which was ARI. City Administrator Kay Hanson said the city does it that way because it cuts down on the number of trucks on city roads. She stated the trucks are very hard on city streets and there aren't enough accounts within the city for more than one company. The West Concord City Council has made no formal decision on whether or not they will contract with Waste Management for the remainder of the year or if they will put the city contract out for bids. The council will make a decision at their next meeting on Nov. 21.
Dodge Center issues four licenses each year. Currently, Advanced Disposal, Waste Management and Garbage Man have licenses. There are two interested parties that will approach the city council on Tuesday, Nov. 12. Chris Skjeveland, owner of Skjeveland Enterprises, has shown interest in the license, and so has Mark Freerksen, owner of Freerksen Trucking and DC Equipment Sales.
Freerksen is interested in starting a garbage service, if he can obtain the license from Dodge Center. He said he has been thinking about starting a garbage hauling company for quite some time but has never acted on it because there were local companies. When he heard ARI had been bought out by Waste Management, he made the decision to try to get the license for Dodge Center, to give citizens an option to use a company that is locally owned. Freerksen said it would not be hard for him to start a new company, because he already owns garbage trucks through his DC sales business, which buys and sells, used garbage trucks. "We buy trade-ins from McNeilus, refurbish them and then resell them," he explained. He said currently he has about 20 trucks.
Freerksen also pointed out if he is not awarded the license in Dodge Center he won't start a waste removal company. If he is awarded the license, he expects it to take about sixty days before he is up and operational.
Skjeveland Enterprises out of Claremont will also be seeking the license that is available in Dodge Center. Currently, owner Chris Skjeveland is only hauling in Hayfield, Claremont and Steele County, but hopes to change that now that most cities will have a license open with ARI being bought out. "We're the only locally owned waste removal company in Dodge County right now," he explained. "I hope to expand service to other area cities." He also said he's been wanting to expand to other cities for quite sometime and feels this is the perfect time to do so.
Skjeveland started his business in 2007 and runs his business out of his rural acreage located outside of Claremont. He said his rates are competitive with other local companies, and he offers recycling every other week, just as Alli Rolloff did. He said his company does not require contracts for their service. "If they aren't happy with the service I provide them, they have every right to no longer use us. If we're doing our job right, then we don't need contracts to keep customers." If he is granted the license in Dodge County he plans to begin offering services on Dec. 1.
To contact Troy Andrist with any questions or concerns you may email firstname.lastname@example.org.