Street Sweeping Contract Debate

By: Jessica Geraci
By: Jessica Geraci

ROCKFORD (WIFR) – A plan to keep Rockford’s streets clean and save us some money, may not be working out as well as originally planned.

Elgin Sweeping Services is in charge of cleaning Rockford roads. In 2012, the Chicago based company agreed to do the job for three years for $295,000 or about $99,000 a year. That dollar figure has gone up. A new proposal would begin in 2014 and pay them for around $158,000 a year or a difference of nearly $60,000. Alderman unanimously rejected this idea and union workers who fought the outsourcing plan two years ago say they’re not surprised to see this happen.

“What happens is that they get a foot in the door, that was the case this time,” said Garry Cacciapaglia, part of AFSCME Local 1058.
Rockford workers likely wouldn’t be able to step back in because the city no longer owns enough street sweeping equipment to get the job done.

Alderman say they still expect outsourcing will save the city more than if street sweeping was done in house. Council members say they want to see a better plan before signing a new contract with Elgin or any other company.

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