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Eastern Connecticut Resource Recovery Authority Extends Successful Partnership with Wheelabrator Technologies
Led by its Solid Waste Negotiating Committee, the Eastern Connecticut Resource Recovery Authority (ECRRA) and Wheelabrator have executed a 10-year agreement for the continuation of sustainable waste management services at the Authority-owned Lisbon Resource Recovery Facility in Lisbon CT. The new agreement continues a three-decade relationship and provides the City of Middletown as well as other Connecticut municipalities' long-term price certainty for waste disposal.
The City of Middletown created the Eastern Connecticut Resource Recovery Authority (ECRRA) in the early 1990’s and continues to be ECRRA’s sole member. ECRRA is led by Mayor Daniel T. Drew, with City Councilmembers Gerry Daley and Phil Pessina as members. After Public Works’ Director Bill Russo and Deputy General Counsel Kori Wisneski successfully negotiated to lower the cost of transporting Middletown’s sanitation district waste to Lisbon, the Negotiating Committee initiated discussions with nearby Southeast Connecticut Regional Resource Recovery Authority (SCRRRA) in 2014. Since 1992, SCRRRA has managed waste disposal and recycling for its twelve municipal members throughout eastern Connecticut. Long-time Middletown City Councilman Gerry Daley led ECRRA’s Solid Waste Negotiating Committee through five years of discussion and negotiations with both SCRRRA and plant-operator Wheelabrator resulting in signed agreements earlier this year. City Director of Finance and Revenue, Carl Erlacher, and Deputy City General Counsel Kori Wisneski also served on the Negotiating Committee.
Benefits to the City of Middletown and ECRRA include annual royalty payments from both SCRRRA and Wheelabrator, participation in revenues from the sale of the plant’s electricity, a guarantee that the City will be offered waste disposal fees set at the lowest rate paid by any municipal waste provider, and payment by Wheelabrator of all administrative expenses of ECRRA.
Further, the City of Middletown, as sole member of ECRRA, will receive 100% of the benefits of ECRRA’s ownership of the 500 ton per day Lisbon facility with a multi-million value expected to increase as the number of waste disposal options decline and regional tip fees rise throughout Connecticut and the Northeast.
ECRRA Board member Councilman Gerry Daley said, “I am very pleased to have been a member of the ECRRA Board since its inception in1994 and am very proud of Wheelabrator’s performance in operating and maintaining the Lisbon waste-to-energy plant for the past twenty-four years. The agreements into which ECRRA has just entered with Wheelabrator and SCRRRA ensure a significant revenue stream for ECRRA for 2021 through 2030 that preserves our ownership of the plant while providing the 12 SCRRRA communities with environmentally responsible solid waste disposal at an attractive and predictable cost. The 135,000 tons of municipal solid waste that the SCRRRA communities will annually deliver to the Lisbon plant will allow Wheelabrator to operate the plant at optimum capacity and efficiency. I also want to express my appreciation to the ECCRRA negotiating team – Carl Erlacher, Kori Wisneski, Steve Lynch, ECRRA Administrator and Financial Advisor, and Ed Sledge, ECRRA legal counsel, for helping us through long and complex negotiations to achieve a very favorable result.”