INDIANAPOLIS, Indiana (WISH) – Mayor Joe Hogsett said the city is working with Republic Service to address the city’s garbage collection and recycling issues.

Republic has had a contract with the city for 20 years, and that current contract expires in a few years. Mayor says if they don’t form the city could look for a new waste collector

“I’ll tell you that if things aren’t fixed quickly, we wouldn’t be responsible if we didn’t look for alternatives that were more effective – more effective,” Hogsett said.

Even in the mayor’s area, he says there are recycling containers that have been in place for some time.

“Most of the houses in my neighborhood have yellow tops, which means the recycling and Republic and these trash cans have been on the streets for quite some time now,” Hogsett said.

I-Team 8 combed the streets and alleys of Indianapolis all week, and we found recycling bins overflowing and unattended from Meridian-Kessler all the way north. We found overflowing trash cans and some that look like they haven’t been touched for weeks.

Complaints to the city skyrocketed in the first three weeks of August. The city and the Department of Public Works have received more than 13,000 calls complaining about Republic. This is six times the average number of complaints.

Republic told I-Team 8 earlier this week that delays in recycling and waste collection are due to labor shortages, supply chain issues and a significant increase in waste. .

“At the end of the day, the garbage needs to be picked up. Now we just have to insist that Republic provide the kind of service the residents of Indianapolis deserve and to the extent that they are unable to do so, we will hold them accountable, ”Hogsett said.

I-Team 8 won the city’s contract with Republic to collect garbage, leaves and recycling for almost half of the county. Public Works has confirmed that the contract is good until 2025.

The agency and the mayor said they could seek damages from the Republic for the missed collections.

Richard Essex of I-Team 8 asked the mayor if Republic should offer discounts to consumers and the city. Hogsett replied that it would be “a good business decision for Republic to make” and “a responsible decision”.

Republic has yet to respond to I-Team 8’s request for comment.