WATERLOO — The Waterloo Town Council will open bids for a new trash-recycling contractor at its Nov. 12 meeting.

The council recently canceled its contract with Republic Services in mid-term to avoid a proposed rate increase. The contract had been scheduled to run through mid-2021.

Republic will continue to provide service until a new contractor is chosen, said Town Manager Tena Woenker. Republic also could be a bidder on the new contract.

Bid specifications call for the new contractor to begin service by Dec. 9.

“If they could start right away, we would let that happen,” Woenker said.

The council will meet in special session Oct. 28 at 6 p.m. in Town Hall for a final vote on the town’s 2020 budget.

The budget will have to allow for a 10% increase in the group insurance rate for town employees, which Woenker described as “quite the leap,” compared to recent years.

At Tuesday night’s council meeting, members discussed a wage-and-salary ordinance for town employees, but made no decisions. They discussed pay raises of 3%, the same as in the past two years.

The council voted on first reading to disband the Waterloo Cemetery board and place control of the cemetery under the Town Council and superintendent of parks.

The cemetery board has dwindled to only two members.

“We’re trying to get it back under control of town staff so we can do the hiring more efficiently,” Woenker said. The town intends to hire a sexton to manage the cemetery, because long-term it could be a burden on the park superintendent. The sexton would arrange for funerals, monument placements and sales of lots.

Deputy Town Manager Pam Howard reported that a board has been formed for Waterloo Feral Felines, a new organization that will oversee a trap-neuter-release program for feral cats.

Carmen Pinkerton, Heather and Jesse Royal and Renee Duszynski make up the board, Howard said. The organization is working to obtain tax-free, nonprofit status.

Waterloo Feral Felines will be represented at a DeKalb Downtown Discovery event Friday from 3-7 p.m. in Waterloo.

Friday’s event will feature live music by the Legendary Trainhoppers, art vendors, farmers market vendors and food sales of sloppy joes, hot dogs and beverages.

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