South Tahoe Hauler Turns 40

Few adults welcome getting older, but one community hauler is celebrating.

South Tahoe Refuse Co. Inc. (STR), which serves nearly 20,000 residential and commercial customers on the south side of the Lake Tahoe Basin in South Lake Tahoe, Calif., recently turned 40 on May 17. And in keeping with its mom-and-pop roots, employees, friends and family were on-hand for the birthday festivities.

Co-founded by Carol Sesser and Achille and John Marchini, the hauling business began with two rear loaders and the purchase of Surv-U Garbage Co. in the spring of 1962. Since then, the company has amassed a fleet of eight front loaders, nine roll-off trucks, and a variety of end-dumps and other trailers, and has added a commercial drop-box program, transfer station, materials recovery facility (MRF) and buy-back center.

STR operates the only transfer station that serves the surrounding Lake Tahoe area. In 1995, the transfer station added a MRF, where more than 20 materials are recovered, processed, stored, and transported to national and global recycling markets.

STR's buy-back center lets residents redeem their state-mandated bottle bill beverage containers. Cardboard and office paper recycling programs also are offered at no charge to businesses, agencies and schools. And a free household hazardous waste program is available to residents.

At its anniversary party, Sesser announced her retirement, but she will remain on the company's board of directors. STR also added Gloria Lehman, daughter of co-owner Bennie Ratto, to its board.