Fountain Valley Sticks With Rainbow Disposal As Trash Hauler (Contract Not Put Out To Bid)
Posted by Chris Emami on September 16, 2013
On the subject of City Government, here is a story in Fountain Valley that involved the trash contract not being put out to bid, AGAIN. On a 4-1 vote with Mayor Mark McCurdy being the lone dissenting vote, the Fountain Valley City Council voted to continue using Rainbow Environmental yet again. If it appears that I have some kind of issue with Rainbow Environmental that would be factually inaccurate, most individuals that I have talked to about trash haulers have told me that Rainbow Environmental is one of the best and most reliable in the business. The issue I see at play is the fact that this contract was not at least put out to bid.
Kudos to Mayor McCurdy for his vote on this item as it was a good idea to at least explore the available options for Fountain Valley on this contract. I would not be in the least bit surprised if Rainbow Environmental was the most competent company for this project based on pricing and competency, but reassurance for taxpayers through an open and transparent bidding process is never a bad solution for a municipality.
Given the long relationship that Rainbow Environmental has had with Fountain Valley I understand that the Councilmembers might have felt a bit of loyalty toward maintaining the status quo, however the main allegiance should be towards ensuring that taxpayers are getting the best deal possible. Again, it quite possibly would have stayed with Rainbow Environmental, but this would be good to have the process potentially save a few dollars.
Regardless of how well a city is run, I think most people would agree that putting things out to bid is a good idea based on the fact that it creates healthy competition between companies that want to provide services. Often times placing it out to bid will provide reassurance that the company currently working with the municipality is the best option available. Pricing is not the only factor to look at when putting an item out to bid either. For example, in construction when multiple companies bid on a project the low bid may same like the easy choice but if that low bidder comes back to the City Council with multiple change orders because they are ill-equipped to handle that specific project, it may end up costing the City more money to work with that company as opposed to one of the higher bids.
Fountain Valley has a track record of fiscal responsibility, limited regulation, and few complaints, however it would not hurt to have a contract for trash hauling services go out to bid more than once every 50 years.