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Trash hauler assigns new account numbers

At the May 28 City Council meeting, Advanced Disposal representative Jennefer Klennert briefed the council about impending changes: Each customer will receive a new number for their garbage-hauling account.

Klennert said River Falls' billing system is unique among AD's customers, formerly serviced by Veolia before the company sold its U.S. operations to AD. Local customers share one account number in common, but each has a unique site number.

She -- along with AD's Midwest Marketing Manager Melanie Williams -- say the uncommon system causes a lot of confusion. People often write the account number on their check instead of the site number, which is needed to properly credit their payment.

The new system assigns one, unique account number to each individual with a garbage-hauling account. Williams said Friday the company will be setting up the new account numbers in the first two weeks of June.

Balances due for January, February and March will be under the old account and site numbers.

The hard-copy bills mailed July 1 will bear the new account numbers and include charges for April, May and June.

Williams confirms that customers who are signed up now for any kind of online services through AD -- for most, automatic payments or paperless billing -- will need to re-register for those services after they receive their new account number in July.

She said the company plans to do considerable outreach to inform people of the change, "They're going to be touched a minimum of three times."

On June 30, e-mail notices will be sent. Customers' July 1 bill will contain information about the change -- possibly on neon-colored paper as suggested by one of the council members.

And on July 8, AD will do a phone blast. Williams said the company's goal is to make it a smooth transition that will bring improvements over the long run, reduce confusion and save time.

The two-number system caused many issues that the upcoming change will resolve, "Now everything will be specific," she said.

Williams said the company is committed to making this a positive change that alleviates stress. She emphasized that customers are appreciated and encouraged to call if they need anything.