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Articles from 1997 In March
How To Pay For The Equipment You Need
In today's business world, acquiring equipment can frustrate even the most financially-savvy owner.
Not only does the equipment have to meet certain job requirements, but choosing a manufacturer and securing financing can be confusing.
Equipment can be acquired four ways: rent, pay cash, get a bank loan or lease. Each method has distinct advantages and disadvantages.
* Equipment rental allows you to use the equipment without the disadvantages of direct ownership, such as maintenance or repairs. This strategy is good for short-term projects, but doesn't make sense for a company that will use the equipment on an ongoing basis, because rental payments are twice as much as bank installment payments and lease payments.
* Cash transactions can be good if the company is in a strong cash position. However, the down side to this method is that cash re-serves are diminished, leaving less capital in reserve for growth or available for an emergency.
* Bank loans in today's economy can be an attractive form of financing because of low interest rates. However, banks often require a lot of information such as financial statements, tax returns and, sometimes, personal financial statements of the principles involved.
Banks look differently at used equipment. Based on the equipment's age and condition, a bank may chose to finance a portion of the deal. In many cases, this is the loan value of the equipment which will only account for approximately 75 percent of the price.
In this scenario, the company would have to pay the balance - not a good position for companies with low liquidity.
Banks also offer lines of credit to aid companies with short-term financing issues. The best use of this tactic is for expansion or when a company needs a short-term cash infusion. It is best not to use a bank line of credit for any equipment-related projects that represent longer term investments.
* Leasing is the fourth way equipment can be ac-quired. Capital conservation, flexible terms and 100 percent financing are just a few of leasing's benefits. Currently, the leasing demand is high, as evidenced by the number of companies choosing to lease equipment. In addition, leasing provides a tax break which compliments business cash flow and seasonal slumps.
Tax Benefits Leasing, when set up properly, will allow the lessee to expense 100 percent of his payment every month of the term.
And the payment to the lender is made with pre-tax dollars. For example, let's say your company grosses $5,000 a month, and you are financing a $36,000 piece with monthly lease payments of $843. Most companies are taxed at a rate of approximately 30 percent, so $1,500 of the $5,000 profit goes to pay Uncle Sam.
In the case of a lease, the $843 paid to the lender can be deducted from the $5,000, leaving a taxable amount of $4,157. Take the same tax rate of 30 percent, and the taxes owed drop from $1,500 to $1,247. A savings of $253 is realized because the lease payment is expensed.
To take this one step further, multiply the effective monthly payment by the lease's term. In this example, that would be $590 times 60 months or $35,400. Notice, this is less than the original cost of $36,000.
Help For Low Liquidity Acquiring assets through leasing becomes even more desirable as equipment costs rise. For affordability, many companies choose to acquire more sophisticated equipment through a lease rather than a purchase.
Generally, leasing companies require lower down payments than other financial institutions. For example, the typical lease transactions require one or two advance lease payments as a security deposit. This represents approximately two percent to five percent down.
Also, all the incidental costs associated with the transaction - such as sales tax, installation and other soft costs - can be rolled into the financing, freeing up even more cash for non-equipment related activities.
Leasing also allows a company to improve cash forecasting. In a lease, the lessee uses the equipment for a specific period of time and, in return, pays a periodic rental or lease payment.
A lease contract specifies the future cost of the equipment. In the case of a fair market value lease, the price at the end of the lease is negotiated between the lessee and the lessor.
Since the purchase option is determined at the end of the lease term, the company can decide if the equipment is outdated at the end of the lease and return it or opt to purchase.
This allows for a more accurate evaluation of the equipment at the term's end as to its condition and/or technological status in the industry.
Most leasing companies offer specialized programs that can be tailored for an individual company's needs. The three most common special programs offered by leasing companies today include:
* Deferred lease programs. If a company is experiencing some cash flow problems and needs three to six months to have the equipment start generating revenue, then a deferred payment plan is an aven-ue they should consider.
* Seasonal lease programs. Seasonal slow periods often affect a company's ability to service existing debt - most common in cold weather climates.
Lease payments that are spread out over the year's busier nine months make it easier for the company to handle the debt load.
* Step payment plans. These are flexible lease plans. Step up programs allow lessees to pay 50 percent of the lease payment for the first year and then resume normal payments for the term's remainder.
Payments in this case really are not deferred but rather are reduced significantly for the first year, giving the company the necessary breathing room it may need to get a project off the ground or simply delay full payment until its cash flow can support the debt.
Leasing, rental, cash purchases and banks all can help your company acquire the equipment you need. Each has distinct advantages and disadvantages, but the mistake most companies make when looking to finance is not considering all facets of their business.
Everything from a project's length to business growth plans should be looked at prior to deciding how equipment will be financed.
legislation: Supreme Court Reduces "Excessive" Punitive Awards
Why are waste equipment manufacturers and other companies that are often targeted in lawsuits happy about an Alabama dentist who bought a BMW with a bad paint job?
In 1994, an Alabama state court awarded $2 million in punitive damages to a dentist who paid $40,000 for a "new" car without knowing that the dealer had partially repainted the vehicle at a cost of $600. Last year, the U.S. Supreme Court ruled that the huge award was grossly excessive and unconstitutional. (BMW v. Gore).
Since then, five federal appeals courts have applied the decision to cases involving companies and individuals, rejecting what they characterized as excessively high punitive awards.
The U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals for the Tenth Circuit, based in Den-ver, slashed a $30 million award to $6 million in a dispute between energy companies. Before the BMW decision was handed down, the same court had upheld the award. Meanwhile, the Richmond, Va.-based Fourth U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals upheld a trial judge who had reduced a multi-million dollar punitive-damages award in a Maryland case involving defective machinery.
In New Orleans, the Fifth Circuit U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals ordered a federal district judge to lower a $150,000 punitive award in a racial discrimination lawsuit.
The Washington, D.C. attorney who successfully handled the energy case's appeal, feels that the courts are really taking the Supreme Court's excessiveness test very seriously.
Business and industry long have decried big punitive awards, which are intended to discipline and deter corporate misbehavior. Compensatory damages, on the other hand, reimburse actual losses. For their part, plaintiffs' lawyers hail punitive awards as necessary to punish gross conduct. Indeed, they note many punitive awards occur in cases where a company sues another company.
By contrast, the highest courts in two socially- and politically-conservative states - Idaho and South Dakota - seemingly unaffected by the Supreme Court's ruling - have upheld large punitive awards. If these opposing trends continue, plaintiffs' lawyers are likely to be even more resolute in filing cases in state courts than they have been in the past.
The Supreme Court for years has been uneasy about large punitive awards. In a 1989 decision, Brown-ing-Ferris Industries of Vermont Inc. v. Kelco Disposal Inc., the court upheld a large punitive damage award to a small hauler that had been victimized by a local affiliate of a national waste firm.
Nevertheless, said Justice Sandra Day O'Connor in a concurring opinion, the reviewing court "should examine the gravity of the defendant's conduct and the harshness of the award of punitive damages." In short, the punishment should fit the crime.
But not until the BMW ruling did the high court actually invalidate an award as unconstitutionally "excessive." As a majority of the justices saw it, a $2 million punitive award simply could not be justified where the actual damages amounted to only $4,000. The justices directed federal district and appellate judges to assess the degree of "reprehensibility" of the defendants' conduct and to relate such awards to comparable criminal or civil penalties.
In the Tenth Circuit decision, the Supreme Court had told the appellate panel to reconsider a $30 million jury verdict in favor of a group of independent natural gas producers. The jury had found that the defendant, which operates a natural gas pipeline and processing system, illegally told its competitors that they could not do business with the producers. Such action cost the independents nearly $1 million in earnings.
Early last year, the Tenth Circuit rejected the defendant company's argument that the award should be reduced because the injury was purely economic. But after the BMW decision, the appeals court changed its mind and sided with the defendant, giving the independent producers a choice: Accept $6 million or face a new trial on punitive damages.
Elsewhere, the Second Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals in New York threw out a $200,000 punitive damage award to a motorist in a suit against a Waterbury, Conn., police officer. The jury found the policeman guilty of malicious prosecution for arresting the motorist solely to harass him. But the appeals court compared the indignities suffered by the motorist to the abuse received by other victims of police misconduct, and offered the motorist the option of a reduced damages award ($75,000) or another trial on punitive damages.
How To Transform Into A Wood Processing Powerhouse
Nearly six years ago, in August 1991, a landscaper trucked a load of brush to a local transfer station in San Leandro, Calif. This insignificant pile of yard trimmings, however turned out to be the first of tens of thousands of tons of wood and yard waste headed to this facility over the next several years.
In fact, only five months later, the Davis Street Transfer Station, operated by Waste Management of Alameda County, a subsidiary of Oak Brook, Ill.-based Waste Management Inc., had recycled 1,630 tons of this material. By 1992, that figure had skyrocketed to 8,721 tons. Because of additional yard material collected curbside in Alameda and Contra Costa counties, tonnage tripled in 1993. Operationally, this meant separate dropoff areas for curbside loads and new markets for the material.
As in the past, self-haul loads were transferred offsite for grinding into fuel, while the new curbside material was shipped 60 miles to a compost facility in California's central valley. The cost for transfer and tipping fees at the compost plant was $38 per ton. By 1994, Davis Street was able to lower its cost to about $32 per ton by using mulch markets. This price allowed the 53-acre facility that handles more than 750,000 tons of refuse yearly to "remain competitive, while eliminating the risks of operating its own mulch or compost facility," said general manager Jack Isola.
By 1996, wood and yard material recycling alone accounted for 103,030 tons and this year, because of the increasing interest in yard waste, the facility expects to receive as much as 130,000 tons.
How Davis Street Did It After visiting six processing operations on the West Coast and completing a four-day tour of composting operations in the Netherlands, Davis Street staff arrived at a final design concept in late 1995. "We needed a system that could produce multiple products from an incoming stream of 450 tons per day of self-haul and curbside material," said project manager Jon Benner.
The staff found that a modified flat-deck screen was more effective and versatile than traditional trommel screening systems for handling large volumes of material from varying feedstocks. High production and diverse products were essential because of the expected daily incoming stream of 450 tons.
By the spring of 1996, the staff began selecting the components of the system, using Bulk Handling Systems, and P&R Machinery Inc., both based in Eugene, Ore., to design, manufacture and install the screening and grinding equipment.
To minimize "overs" from the screening process, they bought a horizontally-fed 500 horsepower electric hog for integration with the screening system. This grinder can handle yard materials and also clean wood waste such as milled wood, lumber, and stumps.
In September 1996, Davis Street installed the new 50-ton - or 250-cubic-yard per hour wood and yard material processing system. The $800,000 system adjoins a 125' x 100' concrete tipping pad which allows for all-weather access for curbside trucks and self-haul customers. The equipment itself was installed on a 150' x 125' pad with an aggregate base. The larger pad also serves as a secondary tipping area and for transfer trailer loading with processed material.
Curbside and self-haul loads are tipped in separate areas on the pad because of contract limitations on end uses. Curbside yard material is processed separately for agricultural, mulch and compost markets. Although contracts prohibit processed material to be used for alternative daily cover (ADC), some allow its use as biomass fuel. Self haul material is mixed with wood waste to produce a screened product for ADC and a ground product for biomass fuel.
Davis Street's on-site mini-MRF supplies the majority of the clean wood waste delivered to the new system. The mini-MRF is a small scale line with eight sorters to recover wood, metal and cardboard from rolloff loads. Approximately 50 tons per day of wood waste are recovered.
Once offloaded, the feedstock is inspected on the ground and any obvious contaminants such as plastics, papers and metals are removed.
A front-end loader pushes the material into an in-floor conveyor which leads to an infeed conveyor that waterfalls into a 20-cubic yard hopper. The hopper feeds an incline conveyor leading to a four-person sort line for additional contaminant removal.
The material is processed after it has left the sort line belt. The feedstock waterwalls onto a BHS debris roll screen (DRS) for removing two-inch material before grinding. This primary prescreen serves a valuable function of reducing hammer wear resulting from the abrasive characteristics of fines.
"Overs" (+ 2") are fed into the hammermill and outfed to a conveyor leading to a fines screen (.75" DRS). Unders (2" -) from the primary prescreen pass over a fines screen (.75" DRS). Yard materials passing over the "fines" screen can be discharged from the system or conveyed and rejoined with material exiting the hammermill. All product exiting the system is conveyed to storage bunkers for transport.
This system is designed to separate the feedstock into five different fractions or sizes depending on its end market use. Three screens separate fines or small material from the incoming stream, while the hammermill produces a ground product. "Different applications require different products," noted Linda Cushman, the organic products specialist.
Biomass fuel is made from the self-haul/wood feedstock. The feedstock follows the same general flow as above with one exception: 2" (-) material is discharged from the system without mixing with ground material exiting the hammermill, which re-duces the potential for high ash levels at the biomass plant. Belt and discharge chute magnets are used to remove metal from the fuel product.
Challenges "Implementing this new system has posed a number of challenges for us," Isola said. "We have had some startup problems due to the complexity of the system and the need to retrain our workforce." The real challenge for Davis Street management has been training and integrating the work of three different unions: quality control, transportation and maintenance.
This workforce historically has focused on disposal related tasks, not processing material to make a product. "Our workers are used to handling, moving, compacting and transferring solid waste with heavy equipment," remarked Bob Biasotti, operations manager.
Davis Street is continuing on a track of "training, training and more training" to maximize the capability of the new equipment, said Benner. These efforts have paid off since the system is exceeding its production specifications. In the future, they will begin matching equipment production with the most cost-effective end markets.
With six months' experience, Davis Street is planning operational im-provements. For example, it will add overhead silos for product storage to improve cycle time, and the primary tipping pad will be increased to handle anticipated wood and yard trimming tonnage growth. Peak daily tonnages are expected to reach nearly 800 tons in spring 1997.
Davis Street's marketing program also will continue to expand. Retail sales of fresh organic products will begin this spring.
"It's gratifying to see our wood and yard waste recycling program grow over the past five years," remarked Isola. "It's rare to set up a recycling program that achieves such significant diversion."
Davis Street Station for Material Recycling and Transfer is one of the nation's largest re-cycling facilities.
Processing equipment: * one integrated wood and yard material screening and grinding system (3BHS Debris Roll Screen by Bulk Handling Systems, a 500-horsepower electronic hog grinder by Processing and Recycling Machinery and various conveyors, sorting platforms and hoppers);
* one automated container sorting system (includes various conveyors, sorting platforms, a finger screen, overhead magnet, air classifier and eddy current from Ptarmigan Machinery and Karl W. Schmidt;
* one 300-horsepower horizontal baler, 2-ram from Enterprise Baler Company; and
* one mini MRF (includes an infeed conveyor, sorting platform and sorting belt) that was constructed in-house using existing equipment from other recycling operations.
Refuse processed in 1996: * transferred: 741,760.71 tons;
* refuse capacity allowed under permit: 1,300,000 tons.
Sources of waste: private, city and county haulers, residential, commerical, industrial, construction and demolition.
Employees: 185 people serving departments for transportation, material recovery, maintenance, container repair and administration.
Service area: Northern and Central Alameda county communities for refuse. Recycles for all these cities, plus Contra Costa county.
Local tipping fees per ton: * city of Berkeley transfer station, $60.10;
* Sanitary Fill, San Francisco, $60.13;
* Pleasanton transfer station, $42.50.
trucks: Keeping Your Coolants
New developments in cooling technology are helping reduce maintenance costs. Vince Ursini, Kysor/Cadillac, Cadillac, Mich., ex-plained that extended service interval (ESI) coolants are needed to minimize maintenance and eliminate issues with proper Supplemental Coolant Additive (SCA) levels. High levels can cause water pump seal leaks or solder corrosion and excessively low levels can cause liner pitting, he said.
Maintaining SCA levels requires topping off with either water or low silicate antifreeze that is not fully formulated. Also, depleting SCAs are difficult to test and add.
Traditional coolants generally re-quire supplemental coolant additives at 20,000 mile intervals; extended service interval coolants are said to be capable of delivering 150,000 to 200,000 miles.
Engine coolant categories include:
* conventional (low silicate anti-freeze with SCA package);
* conventional fully formulated; and
* Extended service interval (ESI)/Long Life.
The two current ESI coolants are the conventional SCA-timed release type which use an ESI filter and or-ganic acid technology, but others will soon follow, Ursini said.
KLLM Transport Services, Jackson, Miss., uses the more expensive ESI organic acid coolant because it provides a longer water pump and thermostat life, and eliminates the water filter, radiator flushing and coolant disposal. In addition, it eliminates plugged radiators, requires little additives, increases aluminum protection and reduces scale and deposit build up. KLLM reports an overall savings due to ESI coolant.
Fully-formulated antifreezes and coolants consist of ethylene glycol, propylene glycol, antifreeze (95 percent minimum glycol) and prediluted coolant (50 percent antifreeze with purified water). All variations contain a full precharge of SCA to protect cylinder liners.
The fill-for-life method consists of a fully-formulated antifreeze mixed with pure water, 50/50 mix, which is low in chlorides and hardness. The result is a pre-charged coolant with a -34 degrees F freeze point. An ESI coolant filter is used and the system runs 12 to 18 months or 100,000 to 150,000 miles before requiring a filter change.
Advantages include antifreeze availability and compatibility, ease of testing with readily available test kits and low purchase cost.
Why should you use extended-life carboxylate-based engine coolants?
* Easy maintenance, due to the low inhibitor depletion, improved stability with hard water, improved coolant compatibility and low toxicity.
* Maintenance of high-quality heat transfer and high temperature corrosion protection for alloys.
* Hardware endurance which provides for long water pump seal life.
Further characteristics include limited depletion, compatibility and performance.
However, some limitations are depleting inhibitors (extender additions at long intervals), foam and cavitation [original equipment manufacturers nitrite requirement for ad- ditional security]. It sounds complicated, but checking your coolant practices is important.
OAK BROOK, Ill. - WMX Tech-nologies Inc., Oak Brook, Ill., recently has announced that it will sell $1.5 billion worth of assets over the next 18-24 months, including the remaining engineering and consulting operations of its Rust International subsidiary.
Contrary to some speculation though, the Wheelabrator Technolo-gies waste-to-energy businesses and the Waste Management International subsidiaries will remain in the company's strategic plan for now.
The company also is eliminating up to 3,000 jobs by 1999, mainly from its Oak Brook corporate offices and nine regional group offices. Approximately 600 of the 1,200 employees to be let go this year already have been notified, the company said. Approximate-ly $300 million is expected to be saved through this restructuring.
However, even after accounting for the buyback of 50 million shares (10 percent), WMX stock has tumbled. The reason, analysts concur, is be-cause the company has lowered its earning targets to $1.75 per share in 1997 and $2.05 in 1998.
Other significant structural changes include the reassignment of CFO James Koenig to president of Waste Management Shared Services, and the resignation of CEO/President Phillip Rooney.
Major institutional shareholders re-portedly sought the executives' re-moval because of the company's stagnant performance and sagging stocks. John D. Sanford, vice president and chief financial officer for Wheelabra-tor, will take Koenig's place. And, WMX Chairman and former CEO Dean Buntrock will serve in Rooney's place until a replacement is found.
WMX also wants to return to its former name, Waste Management Inc., which it operated under until 1993. The proposal will be submitted to shareholders at its May 9 annual meeting.
N.J. County Dismantles Recycling And Emissions Problems
One New Jersey county has taken a different route to increasing recycling and reducing ash residue and heavy metals emissions from its incineration plant. The solution? Demanufactur-ing - a process that recovers usable parts from dismantled or shredded electronic equipment.
The Union County Utilities Author-ity (UCUA), Rahway, N.J., with the help of HDR Engineering Inc., White-plains, N.Y. worked with the New Jersey Department of Environmental Protection (NJDEP), the Union County Department of Policy and Planning, and electronics manufacturers and purchasers to develop an "Expression of Interest (EOI)" to encourage de-manufacturing companies to relocate or expand in the county.
Nine vendors responded to the EOI, which required:
* a process flow diagram showing the flow of materials into a facility, the processing method and the major streams exiting;
* operational items, such as a certificate of destruction; and
* compliance with Occupational Safety and Health Administration safety requirements and other regulatory issues.
UCUA signed a contract with Elec-tronics Processing Associates Inc. (EPA), Rahway, N.J., specifying program participants: county residents, government agencies, schools and businesses with a limit on the number of employees and revenues. EPA was responsible for marketing large businesses in the region.
Concurrently, UCUA received a two-year grant for $100,000 per year from NJDEP to de-velop the program's residential part. In addition, UCUA and the electronics purchasers and manufacturers both agreed to provide in-kind services - $90,000 and $30,000 respectively.
The grant required UCUA to conduct a municipal curbside and drop-off collection program for consumer electronic appliances. In addition, it must evaluate changes in the Union County Resource Recovery Facility's environmental operations, particularly metals concentrations in air emissions and ash residue.
UCUA explained the program to its municipalities, six of which expressed an interest in participating. So far, only one has signed with the others in negotiations. A contract was developed specifying that the municipalities would collect the targeted materials, and UCUA would reimburse them $50 for each ton collected and processed.
Currently, the demanufacturing facility is operating as a demo project under NJDEP exemption. No processing is taking place, and EPA is only manually dismantling the electronic products. Should the company begin automated processing, it would be required to become permitted as a Class D recycling facility for used oil or universal waste.
Universal waste is a new hazardous waste exemption program authorized by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, Washington, D.C. The rule generally applies to batteries, thermostats and spent or recalled pesticides; however, EPA will consider adding new wastes to the program.
To assist other states interested in developing demanufacturing programs, the NJDEP has signed a Memorandum of Understanding for the Promotion of Environmental Tech-nologies with the California Environ-mental Protection Agency, the Mas-sachusetts Executive Office of En- vironmental Affairs, the New York Department of Environmental Con-servation, the Pennsylvania Depart-ment of Environmental Protection and the Illinois Environmental Protection Agency.
As a result, the states have agreed to accept data and the results of demonstrations, evaluations, verifications and certifications of environmental technologies that are conducted or supervised by one of the previously mentioned regulatory agencies.
UCUA and EPA are analyzing the economics of the grant-subsidized residential program. Because of the myriad of electronic products disposed in the residential waste stream, recovery value varies and disposal costs are expected to be higher than those from the commercial sector.
UCUA held an electronics collection day in January 1996 where 9.5 tons were received from 130 participants. This event helped establish a participation rate as well as the variety of materials to expect.
Despite the expected mix of materials received, 81 percent was recycled. The labor cost for disassembling and disposal averaged approximately $340 per ton. However, these processing costs are expected to improve with time as efficiency is increased.
Acquisitions Eastern Environmental Services Inc., Mt. Laurel, N.J., has acquired the R & A Bender Inc. landfill and collection operations near Harrisburg, Pa. The 278-acre landfill is approximately 100 miles from Philadelphia and 190 miles from New York and is able to accept waste from other Eastern solid waste collection companies.
U.S. Manufacturing Inc., New Providence, Iowa, has acquired GDS Screens Inc. The new subsidiary, GDS Systems, now will manufacture and market an industrial line of screening equipment.
Contract Metcalf & Eddy, Branchburg, N.J., has been awarded a $1.3 million contract to provide remedial services at the Massachusetts Military Reservation Superfund Site on Cape Cod.
The Florida Department of Environ-mental Protection has awarded Rust Environment and Infrastructure, Greenville, S.C., a four-year contract, valued at $8 million, for comprehensive environmental services at its statewide hazardous waste site cleanup and drycleaning solvent cleanup program.
Rader Resource Recovery Inc., Mem-phis, Tenn., has received a contract from Reciclados Industriales de Mexico (RIMEX) to supply material handling equipment for a new interim bottle facility in Mexico City.
Alton Labs, Framingham, Mass., has won a bid with the U.S. Postal Service, Pittsburgh District, to manufacture 3,000 chock blocks for their fleet vehicles.
Distributors Mid-Atlantic Plastic Systems, Inc., Roselle, N.J., has been appointed the U.S. Agent for Julien Environmental Technology, Belgium, a manufacture of recycled plastic lumber molding machines and recycled plastic pallet molding machines.
Funding The Bedford Capital Co., New York, offers the Bedford Recycling Fund which focuses on firms engaged in one or more aspects of recycling, including processing, fabrication, manufacturing and marketing of recyclable materials collected from any source. For more information call (212) 688-5700.
Grant The California Integrated Waste Management Board, Sacramento, has awarded $3 million in grants to 34 local governments throughout the state to establish and expand programs to keep household hazardous wastes out of landfills.
Legislation Hollis Devoe, St. Paul, Minn., was convicted for dumping 95,000 tires in Olmsted County, Minn. Devoe was sentenced to 30 days in jail and received a $7,200 fine.
John Carr and Donald Wimmer, co-owners of Electro Precision Inc., each pled guilty to illegally storing and disposing of hazardous waste, ac-cording to Minnesota Pollution Control Agency, St. Paul. Carr will serve 120 days in jail; Wimmer will serve 60 days.
New Office ERL, Bloomfield, Conn., has opened a Southeast Regional Office. The address is 1132 Hemingway Ln., Roswell, Ga. 30075. (770) 643-6504. Fax: (770) 643-6507. ERL provides environmental consulting in hazardous waste compliance.
New Facility Waste Control Specialists, Abilene, Texas, has opened a new hazardous waste facility in Andrews County, Texas. The new facility includes an advanced research and development center focusing on waste treatment and reduction.
Request For Partnership Abu Sultan Trading & Cont. Est., Omani, desire to expand their waste and disposal services within the Muscat capital area. They are looking for overseas partners to provide the technology and financing. Contact: Ram Seshan, Abu Sultan Trading & Cont., P.O. Box 2513 Ruwi, Postal Code 112, Sultanate of Oman. Phone: 590968 or 591806. Fax: 591808
landfills: Contractors Fill Outside Needs For Landfill Operators
Landfill operators continue to face many challenges: Current regulations and modern landfill design demands greater sophistication than ever. Simultaneously, landfill operators are under pressure to improve their efficiency and competitiveness. As a result, many are turning to private firms to design, construct and even operate specialized systems such as gas control, leachate treatment and remedial cleanup.
Design/build contracting can provide:
* The early establishment of a fixed-price budget. Combining the design and construction teams early in the project allows both parties to work together with the end product in mind. This way, cost and constructibility issues are addressed up front and incorporated into the final plans and specifications.
* Overall savings in cost and schedule. An abbreviated design phase and elimination of the traditional bid/award negotiate phases typically result in a stream-lined schedule, as well as associated cost savings.
* A sole point of responsibility for design and construction. Because of the sole-source accountability of the designer/builder, delivery of projects is inherently less litigious. This type of accountability also reduces contractor interface problems, jurisdictional disputes and delay claims.
Only consider design/construct services if the project's parameters are well defined. If the permitting process, for example, is likely to be lengthy or if concept changes might occur, then the need for clear project definition cannot be ensured, and costs may fluctuate. In this case, it is best for the client to obtain design services and then rebid when it is time to build.
When selecting a firm, managers must evaluate the company's experience, personnel and its comprehensive un-derstanding of the project. Moreover, if the contract includes several different firms, it is important to consider not only their individual experience, but also their experience in working together.
After a firm is chosen, evaluate project results and commitment levels. If both parties are satisfied, their other projects should be considered for the future.
"Design/construct project delivery is increasing in popularity, not only in the private sector, but with municipal clients as well," noted Dan Boone, a project manager for CDM Engineers & Constructors, a subsidiary of Camp Dresser & Mckee, Cambridge, Mass.
For example, a closed landfill located near homes in Milwaukee County, Wis., had a methane gas migration problem. The response was a fast-track approach from CDM. In less than four months, the company designed, permitted, built and implemented a gas collection and flare system to eliminate the off-site migration and contain and burn off the dangerous gas (see chart page 14).
"Design/construct is well-suited to fast-track, emergency situations such as the Milwaukee County landfill project, as well as ongoing landfill expansion and capital improvement projects," Boone said.
EL CENTRO, Calif. - Following a recent decision by Federal District Court Judge Rudi Brewster, Arid Operations - supervisor of the Mesquite Regional Landfill, a key component of California RailFill Systems, located 35 miles east of Brawley in Imperial County, Calif. - now can complete a land exchange with the Bureau of Land Manage-ment (BLM), El Centro, Calif.
Once again, the ruling denies the Sierra Club Legal Defense Fund's appeal to block this exchange, previously upheld in November 1996 by the U.S. Department of Interior Board of Land Appeals.
The exchange lands are located in or near the Chuckwalla Bench Area of Critical Environmental Concern and Wilderness Area in Imperial County, and along a ridge line in the Santa Rosa Mountains Wilderness Area in Riverside County (see map).
BLM will receive roughly 2,640 acres of desert lands in return for approximately 1,745 acres previously disturbed by gold mining and gravel extraction. In addition, Gold Fields Mining Corp. - a participant in the RailFill project - will convey an additional 3,000 acres, bringing BLM's total to 5,600 acres of acquired land.
Now that the area is in private ownership, California RailFill reported, all requirements are in place for formal consideration of a landfill permit by the California Integrated Waste Management Board, Sacra-mento, Calif. Upon receipt of air quality and solid waste facility permits, the Mesquite landfill will open with a capacity of 600 million tons and a lifespan of 100 years.
Progressive Waste Programs Key To Los Angeles' Success
WW: In what ways has L.A. been progressive or an innovator in solid waste management during your tenure?
DB: In 1984 when I became sanitation director, the Bureau collected materials manually and we had no significant curbside recycling program. The biggest innovation at that time was the one-man truck method of refuse collection (a single employee in a refuse truck acted as both driver and loader).
Since that time, we have implemented a citywide curbside recycling program for the 720,000 residences we service that includes separate collection of recyclables and yard trimmings. In addition, we automated the fleet that collects the yard trimmings and refuse using a standard allotment of one 60-gallon yard trimmings container (green) and another 60-gallon refuse container (black) for each residence. Collection of recyclables in a 16-gallon yellow bin was performed manually. To ensure cost effectiveness, we developed a series of contracts with material re-covery facilities (MRF) throughout the city - to ensure short haul distances to the processors - and implemented contracts to co-compost our yard trimmings with wastewater biosolids generated from the Bureau's waste-water treatment plants. The result was a compost bagged and sold as TOPGRO, the city's own compost.
Changing the way we provided service to every single customer was a monumental effort. To facilitate rollout and to encourage local business, the city provided Plasto-pan Inc., San Francisco, with a container price preference and, in return, Plastopan built a 60-gallon automated container facility in central Los Angeles.
WW: What were some of the most difficult situations you've faced, and how did you handle them?
DB: All attempts to make improvements are met with opposition and naysaying at some point in an effort, and our programs were no different. A great deal of money was involved in the purchase of a new automated fleet and of the more that 111/42 million automated containers. The lobbying by vendors and manufacturers was unprecedented for sanitation and, at times, it seemed as if the corridors of city hall were lined daily with people advocating their particular products or services.
As we proceeded, both the mayor and city council treated us fairly. They questioned our decisions and sought more information from us, while simultaneously taking the kinds of actions that were in the best overall interest of the city. The Board of Public Works also lent support and encouraged us as we proceeded through what often seemed like a minefield.
The most difficult part of the entire effort was meeting the deadline established by the city council for completing the rollout, which we failed to meet. Although we thought we might have a chance to get the job done, the time needed to manufacture the fleet and containers was just too long to hit the target. But, in retrospect, starting the rollout in the fall of 1990 and completing it in 1995 truly was remarkable and, I believe, in the end, everyone was satisfied with the results.
WW: Define the positive and negative aspects of automating the city's collection.
DB: Automating our yard trimming and refuse collection activities had many positive aspects for the Bureau and our customers. With automation, we were able to move into a new era which no lon-ger relied heavily on the driver's physical ability to collect materials. The new air-conditioned, automated trucks permitted us to establish work standards for collection activities that were not dependent on employee production, but instead were based on a goal of containers emptied per hour. To capture this benefit, our employees, their union and our management came together in a Joint Team for Work Standards to establish standards for on-route performance. Their efforts led to tangible savings for the city as we committed to achieve a 25 percent reduction in collection personnel over a three-year period. We are now in the second year of that effort and are on course to make the commitment.
The program's negative side was most vividly demonstrated on December 6, 1995, when a city-automated truck hydraulic cylinder penetrated the side of one of our trucks and hit the side of a school bus, killing two children and injuring several others. This horrible accident caused the city leadership as a whole to take a new look at the automated program. We began to ask basic questions about the safety of these vehicles, the wisdom of pushing to increase collection speed, the quality of driver pre-checks of the vehicles and whether the automated program was an asset to the city's operations.
Since the accident, intense reviews involving teams of manufacturers, public and private collection providers, engineers and structural materials experts have taken place and the overall system improvements have been positive. The memory of the accident, however, will be a constant reminder to all of the city's collecters that our standard safety practices are important.
We must maintain a strict daily routine to prepare our employees and/or vehicles to deliver our services as safely as possible.
WW: What problems do you anticipate from the city's emerging automated recycling program?
DB: The city is entering another exciting time as we begin the rollout of automated recycling collection. In the program's original design, the use of 16-gallon yellow bins for recyclables (bottles, cans, papers, etc.) proved to be faulty. The city's curbside recycling rate has soared to around 40 percent due primarily to the amount of yard trimmings and compost we collect. This has been the "easy" part.
However, we are not likely to achieve the state-mandated 50 percent or the city goal of 62 percent without doing a better job of capturing more recyclables. Our waste characterization surveys clearly show that although some 40 percent of the refuse stream could be recycled, we are capturing only about 6 percent. It is obvious that we need to do something dramatic to upgrade the recycling program and increase the amount of recyclables we collect.
We tested three types of automated collection of recyclables - all using 90-gallon blue containers. Our largest automated containers are used for recycling because recyclables make up the largest portion of our waste stream. In addition, the container's size will be a constant remin-der to our customers that most of their materials should be going into it. Citywide testing with pilots in each of our 15 council districts provided a great deal of information about single stream, "blue bag" and split container collection methods. In the final analysis, the single stream program showed the greatest potential for cost saving, in-creased participation and decreased scavenging.
We now have secured approval for full citywide rollout from the Board of Public Works, the mayor and two council committees. The last step will be full council approval. We will begin the program by the end of 1998 and expect to have the usual problems with vehicle and container deliveries. No doubt, there will be issues that arise with the container's size. The people who rolled out the initial program have the expertise and knowledge to deal with these kinds of issues, so I strongly believe that all will go well.
WW: What are the key issues solid waste managers will face in the next five to 10 years?
DB: Reduction. Waste requiring disposal always will be a major issue for waste managers. In Los Angeles in the 1970s, it was assumed that disposal sites would never be a problem. The focus of activities was collection and disposal at landfills, and since there were many canyons and old gravel pits in and near the city, it seemed as if there would never be a problem. As we closed our last two city- owned and operated landfills in 1987 and 1996, the old mentality was put to bed and the focus on waste reduction became the most important aspect of our work.
Technology is an important issue as we seek new equipment and systems to do the job better. Global positioning systems that locate fleet vehicles and allows supervisors to call the truck nearest a customer minimizes costs and greatly improves overall program performance. Automated data collection to "coach" drivers on how to improve their performance on the route now are in city vehicles and have proven to be an asset.
Technical outreach to business and industry also is essential. In 1995, the Integrated Solid Waste Manage-ment Office (ISWMO) became a part of the Bureau and is responsible for waste reduction initiatives in the private sector of Los Angeles. Solid waste managers must be alert to any opportunities to learn what works so that they can consider whether any particular initiative will improve their program.
Overall, public education and participation in initiatives to increase diversion of waste away from landfills will always be near the top of the list. When the customer clearly understands the importance of what they do, they will make the right decisions and will do their part to improve the program.
WW: What elements in L.A.'s solid waste program are most satisfying for you?
DB: In the late '80s and early '90s, we began the process of changing a mindset and culture among our employees. Instead of a trash/garbage/refuse program, we created "The L.A. Resource Program" with the idea that what had been trash was, in fact, full of resources to be mined and sold instead of landfilled. Over time, the concept has caught on and we no longer have a Refuse Collection Division, instead we have a Recycling and Refuse Collec-tion Division. A small thing, but a major change in mentality.
Another very satisfying area for me is our new relationship with our working staff and their unions. Instead of continually going head to head on issues, we have found a way to work together for the mutual benefit of both groups. Twelve years ago, doing such a thing would have been impossible, and I give full credit to our employees, to union leaders and to our supervisors and managers for what has been accomplished.
Finally, I am most satisfied with the fact that we have totally changed the way we provide services to our customers. By automating collection, initiating a citywide curbside recycling program and beginning the rollout of a "second generation" program for recycling, we have driven home the point that we are concerned about controlling our costs and minimizing waste.
WW: Will you continue to work in the solid waste field after you retire from the city?
DB: At this time, I have no plans to continue working in solid waste after retirement. After 33 years with the city, I am looking forward to taking some time and doing a lot of things that there just wasn't time to do after getting up at 4:15 a.m. every day.
I'm not precluding work at some time in the future, but for right now, I am eagerly looking forward to some good quality time with my wife Linda, our sons and our three grandchildren.
Polluter Pleads Ignorance And Wins
Federal prosecutors must prove that polluters knew they were polluting, according to a ruling by the U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit [U.S. v. Ahmad, No. 95-20627, 5th Cir., Nov. 27, 1996].
The appeals court reversed the conviction of Attique Ahmad, a convenience-store owner who dumped thousand of gallons of gasoline into the sewer system of Conroe, Texas. The decision, which sets a new, tough standard for proving environmental crimes, has angered the Justice Depart-ment and environmentalists.
As a result, prosecutions under the Clean Water Act in Texas, Louisiana and Mississ-ippi - where Fifth Circuit decisions have direct effect - now must include proof that the alleged polluters knew they were discharging a hazardous substance. However, defendants throughout the country most likely will use the ruling in fighting government claims in this somewhat hazy area of the law.
It's not clear yet whether the Justice Department will ask the U.S. Supreme Court to review the Fifth Circuit ruling. But, pressure is mounting, particularly from prosecutors who handled the Texas case.
The decision "could be read to substantially and negatively impact the enforcement of [environmental] laws," according to Michael Shelby, the government lawyer who prosecuted Ahmad.
Criminal enforcement of environmental laws is sharply on the rise. For the most part, prosecutors have successfully argued that in such cases, they don't have to prove criminal intent for each element of the crime. Instead, they must prove only that the defendant discharged a contaminant without a permit - no matter what the defendant knew about the substance.
The Fifth Circuit decision said that prosecutors have had it too easy. Not surprisingly, defense lawyers are elated with the ruling, which they believe can benefit companies and individuals under all kinds of environmental laws. Thomas Bartman, a Texas lawyer, told The Wall Street Journal that his firm, which represents manufacturers and oil companies, is sending out letters to lots of clients.
A Boston lawyer who has a number of corporate clients under federal investigation said that several of them could benefit from the appeals court decision. "Where there have been inadvertent violations, ... this [precedent] could help," he said.
Other lawyers say the ruling will give individual and corporate defendants more leverage in plea bargaining, which is how the overwhelming majority of criminal environmental cases are resolved. Criminal actions are often coupled with civil cases, which are not affected by the decision.
Despite his victory, Ahmad does not emerge as a model citizen. Indeed, his de-tractors include his own lawyer. "There are some ugly facts," said Bateman who also helped with the appeal. "It's kind of hard to see how the guy didn't know he had done it," said the Boston lawyer who had merely read the decision.
As the story unfolds in the appellate opinion, Ahmad found that water was leaking into the top of an underground gas tank at his convenience store and gas station. Instead of hiring a professional, he decided to save money and empty the tank himself.
A tank repair expert testified that he had warned Ahmad it would be "dangerous and illegal." The expert also said that Ahmad replied, "Well, if I don't get caught, what then?"
Ahmad rented a pump and, according to eyewitnesses, pumped the liquid into the street where it flowed into a manhole. Nearly 4,700 gallons of gasoline mixed with a small amount of water contaminated a nearby creek and coursed through eight miles of sewer pipes to Conroe's sewage treatment plant. The next day, the plant and two schools were evacuated as local officials feared an explosion.
At trial, Ahmad's lawyer wanted to introduce testimony from two witnesses who claimed that Ahmad did not know he was pumping gasoline. However, the trial judge said that Ahmad's state of mind was not relevant, and he refused to allow testimony from the witnesses. In the end, he was convicted and then sentenced to 21 months in prison.
However, the Fifth Circuit reversed the conviction, saying that the trial judge had overlooked two recent U.S. Supreme Court decisions on a defendant's state-of-mind. In one case, the high court overturned a conviction for possessing a machine gun because the government failed to prove that the defendant knew that his weapon actually qualified as a machine gun. In addition, the appeals court said that the two witnesses should have been allowed to testify.
But the case is far from over for Ahmad. The U.S. Attorney's Office in Houston responded that "under any standard of law ... by the Fifth Circuit or the Supreme Court ... we will prosecute Mr. Ahmad."
The House That Barbara Built
Wouldn't you love to own a company whose workers were so dedicated to their jobs, that when they took ill, rather than leave the company without manpower, they send a relative to work in their place instead? How about a 99 percent show-up rate by truck drivers when the temperatures are -10 degrees?
Incredulous as this may sound, this is commonplace at the Fred B. Barbara Family of Companies, headquartered in the heart of Chicago.
"Without my employees, I couldn't have done what I was able to do," said Fred B. Barbara, president and chief operating officer. "Employ-ees take pride in their work and this pride is directly reflected in service to our customers."
Having such dedicated employees has allowed Barbara to build a successful, full-service disposal and recycling operation in an area of the country wrought with heavy hitters such as WMX Technologies Inc.; Browning-Ferris Industries Inc (BFI); USA Waste Services Inc.; and Allied Waste Industries Inc.
A native Chicagoan, Barbara was born into a family with a track record in the trucking business. Barbara's grandfather left Italy in the early 1900s and operated five trucks, alternating transportation of ice in the summer and coal in the winter. His father owns A. Barbara Trucking, a dump truck operation also based in Chicago.
Barbara joined his father's company in high school as a mechanic's assistant. After high school graduation, he became a driver, and in 1976, struck out on his own, buying his first truck and made a living by hauling asphalt and gravel for construction customers.
Since then, the Barbara Family of Companies has grown to include: Fred B. Barbara Trucking, Shred-All Recycling Systems and Environtech Landfill, which collectively generate annual revenues of approximately $36 million and employ more than 150 people. Barbara's 30,000-square-foot, multi-purpose transfer station, built on five acres, is the hub of Shred-All's operations.
Built in 1991, the facility services both Barbara's trucks and other Chicago solid waste disposal companies. It accepts 2,000 tons per day (tpd) of municipal garbage, recyclable materials, old tires, wood and construction and demolition (C&D) debris.
The city of Chicago, its largest customer, delivers 50 percent of the daily tonnage. Tip fees are in the high $30s per ton.
Shred-All Recycling Systems Late last year, Barbara unveiled a new addition to Shred-All Recycling Systems: a modern, multi-million dollar materials recovery facility (MRF) that now stands in a building used to pack meat in the 1930s.
Why does Barbara invest so much in recycling, when other haulers are divesting? "Simple," he said. "I wanted to be more competitive in the trash business and felt this could be accomplished by offering recycling services." This tactic also allows Barbara to reinvest in his companies, as each one provides complementary support for the others.
The 26,000-square-foot recycling center is permitted to process 1,000 tpd. Materials are moved along a 175-foot conveyor system which connects the adjacent transfer station to the recycling center. During the one 10-hour shift, about 30 employees sort materials, such as cardboard, newspaper, metal, plastic, glass and wood.
The enclosed sorting area has amenities designed to maintain a safe and positive working environment for the employees: The room is air-conditioned and continuous music plays in the background. A scrubber-filter system ensures clean air quality for the sorters, who are assigned a permanent work station.
From the sorting stations, employees drop materials down chutes leading to separate cages on the first floor. The materials either are baled or sold in bulk to dealers. Shred-All has established relationships with several brokers to sell the material. As for his materials marketing philosophy, Barbara said he prefers to "shop around" to avail himself of multiple resources.
The building also features an enclosed viewing area for visitors interesting in learning about the recycling process. Barbara evaluated the role recycling would play in his business mix before constructing the center. "We built the recycling center for the year 2000's needs, not 1996's needs," he said. The MRF is currently using 10 percent of its capacity - a figure that Barbara expects to increase in the future.
When asked about this investment, which is so closely situated to four MRFs operated under contract with the city, Barbara commented, "as the city grows, there will be room for everyone."
Barbara offers his customers something unique: a partnership. If materials generate enough revenue, he presents the customer with a rebate at year's end. This eliminates most of the difficulty of tracking market prices monthly and cutting checks. Plus, it allows customers to budget for refuse services based on its actual cost.
However, he makes no revenue promises. Do customers respond, knowing that they have to pay for the service? They were reluctant at first, Barbara admitted. However, by educating customers about the potential decrease in waste removal charges, Barbara was able to develop a sizable customer base.
"Educate customers about the economics of recycling," he advised. "It may cost to recycle in some in-stances. However, show customers the avoided disposal fees." Forty percent of Barbara's recycling customers received a rebate last year. Tip fees at the recycling facility are in the high $40s per ton.
In 1992, the city enacted a recycling ordinance, mandating a five-year goal to recycle 25 percent of all municipal solid waste generated. Businesses and apartment buildings also are required to develop recycling programs. "Everyone is stumbling along to figure out what works. Recycling has no established set of rules," he said.
As for the city's blue bag residential recycling program, Barbara feels that the "city has the right idea with the recycling centers. It was a bold and progressive step to make such a financial commitment to and investment in recycling."
Recycling C&D Also on the five-acre property is a separate 15,000-square-foot building for processing C&D debris. Front-end loaders and a trommel system separate incoming construction debris, including cement, wood and tree stumps.
C&D customers view Barbara's service as a valuable tool in controlling their waste, representing a more cost-effective landfill alternative.
Barbara purchased a Rexworks wood grinder that processes at 100 tons per hour (tph). This ground-up wood is used as landfill roadfill, on forest preserve trails and in chipboard. Concrete is delivered to a private concrete crusher that is unaffiliated with Barbara's company.
A section of the transfer station is used to shredscrap passenger and truck tires. Eight years ago, Barbara purchased a Mac-Saturn mobile shredder which can process about 75 tph.
Each month, the facility sends 1,500 tons from this operation to Waste Recov-ery's tire-derived fuel facility in Marseilles, Ill., which has contracted with Shred-All since 1991.
The shredder also processes wood pallets, 55-gallon drums, aluminum scrap, paper and wire. Currently, Barbara is negotiating the purchase of a larger shredder, to use permanently on-site.
Environtech Landfill Located 60 miles outside of Chicago in Morris, Ill., Environtech Landfill was purchased by Barbara in 1986 to support his trucking and recycling operations. Daily, 1,000 tons of municipal solid waste, non-recyclable garbage and separated bulk waste are landfilled there. The tip fees range from the high teens to the low $20s per ton. Based on 1996's average volume, Barbara expects the landfill to be open for 17 more years. It currently operates on 105 permitted acres.
An in-ground water monitoring and leachate collection system automatically pumps excess wastewater to the city of Morris for filtration and cleaning. Due to anticipated landfill closures in the next 18 months, En-virontech will remain as one of few to operate within a 60-mile radius of Chicago, said Barbara.
As a daily cover, he uses six inches of dirt or rejected paper pulp from a separate operation and is currently installing a methane gas system manufactured by DuPage Bio-Energy Inc., Barlett, Ill.
Barbara has put technology to work for him. A computerized weighing system at the landfill, manufactured by RMS Refuse Management System and developed by Target Market Systems, Rochester, N.Y., provides customers with instant data about their loads, such as volume or weight, tip fee, truck number and the date.
Such technology enables the landfill to be run by a lean staff of 10 employees. "Automation is the only way to go," said Barbara, who noted that it allows for immediate feedback and is great for billing.
This system also provides data - material, weight, customer, truck number and driver - on all trucks entering the Shred-All transfer station. As a bonus, the city of Chicago receives direct data transmission to record all loads.
Barbara Trucking If you live or work around Chicago, you will recognize the familiar orange color of Barbara's fleet. Choosing flaming orange as his signature truck color was part of his marketing strategy to boost visibility.
Rather than require employees to dress uniform style, Barbara provides hats, jackets and t-shirts with the "Barbara orange" and signature logo.
The trucking operation employs more than 100 people to manage the transportation of more than 5,000 tpd of solid waste.
Barbara owns and operates all of the equipment, including 115 late-model, radio-dispatched Mack tractors, 135 transfer trailers, dumptrailers and seven packers, seven 70-ton cranes with 85-foot booms and eight rubber tire highlifts, available for leasing to customers.
Using live-floor transfer trailers, Barbara serves 600 collection customers and provides transportation services for six other transfer stations.
The fleet is maintained on-site at the nine-acre fleet yard. Barbara em-ployees wash, repair, paint and detail the trucks regularly. Using two 1,400 psi pressure washers, six employees handwash each vehicle.
Since starting in 1976, Barbara has provided a wide range of trucking services for customers, in-cluding commercial and residential sectors, as well as local government.
For example, Barbara Trucking has hauled excavated materials for major construction contractors and has transported residential waste from city of Chicago transfer stations to landfills in Illinois, Indiana and Michigan.
The company maintains an exclusive hauling contract with BFI, Houston, and FSC Paper, Alsip, Ill., a subsidiary of Wisconsin Tissue. Any rejected paper pulp from FSC's newspaper deinking process that cannot be recovered is used as alternate daily cover at either a BFI landfill or the En-virontech Landfill. A-bout 1,000 tpd are transported by Barbara Trucking.
Barbara encourages others to form joint ventures. Especially for smaller companies, strategic partnering with bigger, national companies can be beneficial.
"You can complement your own business. Never rule it out," he recommended.
Several times, Bar-bara was called by larger companies to support a job. He said people work with him because they know he is reliable and reported he likes the challenge of "being called upon to do the impossible."
Size has its advantages. "I don't need to hold a big staff meeting to make a decision on how best to help my customers," he said. "If someone else can't do the job, we will find a way."
The employees act almost like family. "If they have the "I-can-do-it" attitude and they look out for one another, then the company is more competitive," he said. And no one is exempt from work: Rather than rest on his laurels, Barbara works 14-hour days running a hands-on operation.
Perhaps this "all-for-one-and-one-for-all' philosophy derives from employing family in the business. He employs six family members: his brother, Bruno is the superintendent of overall operations; son, Anthony is the general manager of Shred-All; daughter, JoMarie, has provided accounting support; JoMarie's husband, Russell, is Shred-All's lead dispatcher; and his youngest daughter, Jamie, is working part-time as a secretary while a full-time student at DePaul University.
On The Horizon What's next for Barbara? "The sky is the limit," he said, stressing his desire to expand the Environtech Landfill. There is a permit application pending with the Illinois Environ-mental Protection Agency. If granted, it would add 10.6 million gate yards of capacity. Barbara also plans to develop additional transfer stations and recycling centers.
Barbara said his dream was to own a company which made a profound statement. Here in the heart of Chicago, one of the industry's most competitive markets, a dedicated entrepreneur proves daily that the hallmarks of success are basic: treat your people and your customers with respect. It reaps tremendous dividends.
Trucks: 115 Mack tractors; 60 110-yard transfer trailers; 75 30-yard dump trailers; 20 service vehicles; 20 special equipment vehicles; 8 CAT rubber tire hylifts (5-12 yard bucket capacities); 7 50- to 100-ton cranes; 9 CAT tract bulldozers; 7 Mack model MR packer rear loaders (Leach 2RII bodies); 9 Mack model DM rolloffs with Galbreath hoists
Containers: * Rolloff boxes: 75 15-yard, 125 20-yard, 100 30-yard, 100 40-yard
* Compactor boxes: 50 30-yard, 50 40-yard, 25 40 yard
* Other: 2,500 of assorted sized containers
Customers: 1,000 commercial and industrial customers
Service area: Greater Chicago area, including neighboring suburbs
Services: Recycling; construction and demolition debris removal and/or recycling; business and industry (commercial) waste collection; tire shredding, wood grinding and asbestos hauling
Most interesting: Employees found a live puppy in a city of Chicago residential packer garbage load. The puppy jumped out of the load alive and well, and became the mascot of the transfer station.