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Mayor Wagner Says the City’s Garbage Problem Remains Unresolved

Belize City’s garbage problem remains unsolved tonight. As we’ve reported, the Bernard Wagner-led council is unable to pay the approximately one point three million dollars owed to Belize Waste Control to pick up residential garbage for the past twenty-three weeks. When asked for an update on the situation, Mayor Wagner told the media that situation remains unresolved.

Bernard Wagner, Mayor of Belize City: “We’re still at an impasse with Belize Waste Control and we continue to speak and try to reach common ground. The reality is nothing has changed. The council’s finances is still grim. People are not working, people are not paying taxes and similarly if people are not paying taxes the money doesn’t fall from the sky for the council and so we continue to meet with the principals of the company to see how we can alleviate the situation with garbage. At some point in time we will have to see – I have the long term plan I’ve already discussed the long term plan of a garbage fee but that’s down the road. In the interim we want to get this thing behind us with the company and we remain optimistic. As I said we are in discussion with the provider. It may or may not we have been down this road many times before. We have been in this situation not only this council prior councils it’s just a situation that is untenable. The sustainability of this can’t and we need to fix it permanently. We have had discussion with the government on that and they have indicated to us that something will be coming towards the bill but we wait and see.”

When the same situation faced councils in the past, the company took the council to the court. While the Mayor was circumspect about whether the situation goes down that road, he did suggest that a partial bailout may come from the central government.

Bernard Wagner, Mayor of Belize City: . As I said we are in discussion with the provider. It may or may not we have been down this road many times before. We have been in this situation not only this council prior councils it’s just a situation that is untenable. The sustainability of this can’t and we need to fix it permanently. We have had discussion with the government on that and they have indicated to us that something will be coming towards the bill but we wait and see.”

The council pays sixty thousand dollars per week for garbage.