Hundreds of Cape businesses to see waste rates triple
CREATED Sep. 17, 2012 - UPDATED: Sep. 17, 2012
CAPE CORAL, Fla. - In July, Mike Shelton opened Crazy Lure Bait and Tackle on Vincennes Street in Cape Coral. Shelton's banking on seasonal residents to survive.
"We're living month-to-month right now off of the locals," said Shelton.
Shelton is one of 369 Cape Coral business owners whose solid waste rates will triple starting October 1.
"We hope to schedule those a little bit faster and the people from up north come a little bit sooner," said Shelton. "To make up for it?" asked Fox 4 reporter Gabrielle Sarann. "Yes!," he replied.
The rate for Waste Pro trash collected once a week will increase from $21.59 cents to $70.36. If you need the service twice a week, the price jumps to $140.72 from $43.18, according to Connie Barron, the spokeswoman for the city of Cape Coral.
"it was quite astounding," added Shelton. "That's a large amount, it really is."
While some business owners may not like the sound of it, one councilman says the city couldn't afford not to do it.
"It's still money, that's going to a purpose that needs to be served," said Kevin McGrail, at the council meeting on Monday, September 10.
And that's into city coffers to pay for infrastructure and road improvements. But Cape Coral Chamber of Commerce President Mike Quaintance is worried the increase could cause some stores to shutter.
"It will be a difficult burden for some," said Quaintance. "For some, it's going to be painful where it may push them over the edge if they're teetering."
It's a consequence business owners like Shelton hope they won't have to face.
"We charge $2.50 a dozen for live shrimp," explained Shelton. "What if we all of a sudden took it to $7:50? We wouldn't have customers very long."