Garbage service, railroad crossings not up to par, council members say

Franklin City Councilman Chuck Autin promised Tuesday he would not rest until garbage service in the city improves, but also collection trucks stop damaging property.

He also demanded the company repair damages already incurred.

Progressive Waste, of Houma, new owners of SweeDee Inc., met with Autin, he said.

“This morning when I came to work there was about a 12-foot smear of garbage,” he said. “It’s unacceptable. Everywhere I go, people are complaining about garbage cans being knocked over. For instance… on Main Street they blow the horn for people to come out at six in the morning to push their garbage cans closer, because they don’t want to get out the truck.”

He said a truck hit a sign on Willow Street near Main Street, bending it toward the street. “So they can’t reach the garbage can, and they call (the owners) to come move their garbage cans,” Autin said. “They are not doing their jobs. I’ve had two reports of them backing down the street in Eastwood, people having to go around them, they’re speeding down streets. We’ve been promised new trucks, we haven’t got new trucks.”

Autin said he guesses, “I’m the garbage councilman. I’m going to fight this. I rode around this afternoon and we had almost 50 garbage cans knocked down into the streets. Garbage cans are broken. We deserve better service than we’re getting. I don’t know what we can do about it, but we have to get them to stop trashing our town.”

He said sidewalks broken by trucks have not been repaired.

“They have got to clean their act up,” Autin said. “I’m not backing down.”

Also Tuesday, Councilman Lester Levine asked the administration to look into the condition of railroad crossings on Willow Street and Northwest Boulevard.

Levine said the Willow Street crossing at the rails is so bad “you almost have to drive on the side to avoid tearing up your car.” He said the crossing “pad” planks are rising.

He said the track on Northwest Boulevard itself isn’t bad, but the road is so much higher on both sides of the crossing it is dangerous.

“Someone’s going to get hurt or tear up their automobile,” Levine said.

Director of Administration Karen LeBlanc said the city had asked the railroad to make repairs. She said they did make some repairs at Northwest Boulevard, but was not sure about Willow Street, and there was no further correspondence received by the city.

St. Mary Now & Franklin Banner-Tribune

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