City sanitation workers take concerns to Fresno mayor

FRESNO, Calif.

About a dozen city workers gathered outside the public access TV studios at Van Ness and Calaveras where Mayor Ashley Swearengin was making an appearance.

The workers wanted to know if the mayor is planning to sell the city's residential garbage collection service to private companies.

She told them no decisions have been made.

"We're at the very early stages of considering this, I don't even know if I will recommend it. I've got to get the data first, you know," Swearengin said.

"I think they are looking seriously at privatization. I think they are trying to fast track it. And if she can quell us, keep us quiet, and continue to move forward with what she's planning, I think it's going to happen," sanitation engineer Clarence Williamson said.

The city recently sold its commercial garbage collection service to two private companies.

City workers say they're also concerned because the city is paying a consultant $40 thousand dollars to study privatizing residential garbage collection.

The workers say if the city sells its trash service, customers will see rising rates.

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