Sander wants to close transfer site

Jason Ferguson
Citing monthly losses of $5,000-$7,000, Sander Sanitation through its attorneys has proposed an addendum to its waste hauling contract with the City of Custer that, if approved, would see its transfer site off Sylvan Lake Road closed.
“There were many options proposed to the city as it related to the transfer station that were considered,” wrote Sander attorney Michael Wheeler of DerMers-seman, Jensen, Tellinghuisen & Huffman, LLP of Rapid City. “After consideration of the options and continued dialogue with the city, continued operation of the transfer station is simply not a viable option.”
In addition to the aforementioned monthly losses as the station operates with present volumes, Wheeler wrote there is “significant capital investment” the facility needs in addition to all the improvemens that have been completed to date.
Therefore, Sander approached the city to discuss adding an addendum to the contract that would exclude and terminate the transfer site requirement from the contract and, in connection with that, negotiate a reduced price for the city’s waste hauling from $16.72 to $15.72 per garbage can. The city charges more than that per garbage can to cover the cost of operations such as mailing statements, cleanup days, etc.
The city and Sander Sanitation are in the second year of a five-year contract that expires May 1, 2022. The contract says Sander must operate a transfer site and be open six hours per day, three days per week, one of which must be Sunday.
The council made no decision, but acknowledged receipt of the letter and the proposal.
In other news from the Nov. 18 meeting, the council:
• Discussed Dakota Resources’ awarding Custer’s Recreation and Wellness Team its Innovative Rural Community Prize Oct. 19 which includes $5,000 to be used toward Dakota Resources’ community coaching credit.
Colleen Hennessey presented the city with the plaque the wellness team was awarded to be displayed at city hall. She discussed things the team has accomplished and what it has planned, such as wayfinding signs along the Mickelson Trail, hopefully by this spring.
The signs will cost around $1,900, Hennessey said, $1,500 of which it is hoped will be paid for through a grant. Local service clubs will be approached about funding the additional $400.
Other projects in the works include installation of bike racks, a city walking/biking plan, a program to provide fresh fruit for those who may not have access to it and installation of a flashing crosswalk where the Mickelson Trail crosses Mt. Rushmore Road by the old Shopko building.
• Approved the Custer Area Chamber of Commerce’s request to hold the Christmas parade Dec. 7. The parade will be at 5:30 p.m. and will travel down Mt. Rushmore Road from 8th Street to 4th Street.

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