Message from the Board of Directors:
Many residents are already aware Stone Ridge has been experiencing issues with the quality of service provided by American Disposal. There have been many reports by residents, and we are keeping track of them all. We hear you. Please keep them coming.
The HOA received notice earlier this week that American Disposal will be reducing Stone Ridge’s trash service to once a week service beginning June 3rd. The condo associations within our community have also been notified of this change to their service as well.
Association staff and the Board have been in talks with American Disposal trying to resolve the issue impacting our community, but their issues are larger than just Stone Ridge.
We realize this will be an inconvenience for some and it may take time creating a new routine. The waste management industry in this area is rapidly changing and the Board is reviewing all options. Here are the facts:
- Changing trash service providers involves logistical issues such as switching out trash and recycling toters for every residence. It is not a decision the Board takes lightly nor is it something that can be done quickly. Should we decide to change contractors, a new contractor needs time to order and deliver new toters. For a little while we are going to have to live with this change.
- American Disposal had contractual obligations to Stone Ridge. Performance of those obligations and any recourse are being reviewed by the Board and our legal counsel.
- There are only a few residential trash contractors in this area that can service a community the size of Stone Ridge and we have been in discussions with all of them for several months. We also know these same companies are meeting many other communities of our size and larger who are impacted by American Disposal’s sudden operational changes. Taking on multiple large contracts in a short period of time could have a negative impact on these companies and that is something we have to consider.
- Yes, there will be a reduction in the immediate costs due to the reduced service. However, there will not be an immediate change in your monthly assessments. Assessments are set yearly based on the budget approved before the Annual Meeting each year. Any changes in the budget due to changes in the costs of services will be reflected in next year’s (and future years) budget and assessments. No, the HOA is not “making money” off the (small) savings from this change.
- Trash is treated as a per-home, pass-through cost to only townhouse and single family homes. At this time, each condo association has their own individual agreement with American Disposal. Changes to the trash contract will be reflected in those assessment amounts.
- As a result of the Board’s efforts, the cost of trash service in Stone Ridge has been essentially flat since the community was formed in 2003. With the current labor issues and rising disposal and recycling costs industry-wide, costs for all trash services are increasing. We will be evaluating all of these issues including interviewing other contractors in the coming months.
- One day a week trash service is becoming more common as a result of the industry changes noted above. We are not saying that this change is permanent, but it is an option we will likely need to consider as costs keep rising. We are interested in knowing the impact of 1-day a week trash pickup has on your family – good or bad. You may email firstname.lastname@example.org.
- We are not alone. We have been in contact with a number of large HOA’s in the northern Virginia region and they are experiencing similar problems with American Disposal. In addition, there have been recent news articles from localities around us, such as the City of Manassas and Fairfax County.
The Board is actively in discussions with American Disposal, and other trash service providers and is exploring all possible options. As further details emerge, additional communications will be sent out. Our goal is to keep you informed and be as transparent as possible during this process. We appreciate your patience as we work through this situation.