County to take over Manzanita Transfer Station, hopes to hire CARTM employees

After denying CARTM’s request for a contract extension, the Tillamook County Commissioners charged the Solid Waste Department with outlining a plan for the future of the Manzanita Transfer Station. |
By Chelsea Yarnell
Guest Contributor
Solid Work’s Chris Laity recommended that the County operate the transfer station until October 2019, at that point the County would reevaluate their need for a request for proposal from alternative organizations.
Laity told the Commissioners that the transfer station will require at least three staff members.
And ideally, those staff members would be previous CARTM employees.
“Hiring their staff on direct, is really the way I want to go because they come trained,” Laity said. “They come with the knowledge that we don’t necessarily have throughout the County.”
“We’ve had discussions about hiring the most people form CARTM that we could, and that just makes the most sense,” Commissioner David Yamamoto said. “It’s my intent to get the Manzanita Transfer station back in operation as quickly as we can. But, what’s holding us up right now is: Do we go through a temp agency? Which, I would prefer not to do. Or do we just get an agreement with the union where we can hire people that are already working at CARTM?”
Laity informed the Commissioners that they would operate similar to the Pacific City Transfer Station, which is also run by the County. Recycling would still be accepted.
While CARTM lost their contract to operate the transfer station, the County proposed to let them run the Refindery.
“We’ve offered for CARTM to continue to operate the Refindery,” Commissioner Yamamoto said. “One of the conversations we had was, would the County be willing to accept a $1 a year for the lease if CARTM wanted to run the Refindery. And what we hear is no, CARTM does not want to run the Refindery.”
CARTM is to make an official response to the County’s offer.
“This has not been an easy choice,” Commissioner Bill Baertlein said. “CARTM has done a fantastic job over the years. I really have been awestruck over the years with the work that has been done. We’re a special revenue district in Solid Waste and we have a budgetary constraint and we’re starting the Solid Waste in financial difficulty…There’s a good chance that if we keep going the way we are, we would overspend the budget and be shut down by late May. This is not an easy choice. For me, it’s a financial choice and for the citizens of Tillamook County.”
Commissioner Baertlein and Yamamoto had voted to end CARTM’s contract at last week’s meeting.
Commissioner Tim Josi voted in favor of the extension.
“I think most of you know I didn’t support closing CARTM,” Josi said. “I think CARTM should have had the next six months because it’s such a wonderful intuition.”