The City of Montreal still dissatisfied with Ricova’s work

Already placed on a blacklist which prevents it from obtaining new contracts from the City of Montreal until 2027, the company Ricova was notified of 150 breaches in an evaluation reporting “unsatisfactory performance” for another municipal contract that she had kept.

For a waste container collection contract, Ricova obtained a score of 57.9%, considered too low for the company to obtain new contracts in the next two years, according to the City.

This poor rating is part of a series of disputes between Montreal and the company concerning various contracts, which led the City to ban Ricova, a decision that the latter is contesting in court.

Even if it cannot bid on new contracts in Montreal, those already in progress continue, and there are many of them.

With this new disagreement, Ricova accuses the municipal administration of coming after her.

This time, Montreal considers that Services Ricova did not respect a contract for the collection of semi-buried containers loaded by crane which began on 1er November 2020 and ended on October 31, 2023, for which she was paid 1.3 million.

The City judges that the company did not have enough staff to carry out its work properly.

“Throughout the contract, several collections had to be postponed, spread over more than one day or were simply not completed due to mechanical breakdowns and insufficient availability of equipment. Furthermore, the shortcomings associated with the supervision of operations carried out by the supplier, considered mediocre, forced the City to compensate for this shortcoming in many ways (daily operational monitoring, meetings, warning notices and penalty notices, acquisition of a RFID collection tracking system) in order to ensure that the expected service is carried out,” we can read in the municipal documents presented to the elected officials of the executive committee on March 13.

Billing issues also forced city staff to spend a lot of time analyzing invoices, all of which required corrections within the first two years of the contract.

“In total, more than 150 breaches of contractual obligations were communicated to the supplier and documented by means of eight warning notices (around 90 breaches) and 12 penalty notices (around 65 breaches)”, indicate the files of the environment department, which justifies the score of 57.9% awarded to the company and the decision not to grant it a new contract for a period of two years, according to the City.

Too severe

Ricova representatives challenged the City’s findings, but only managed to change the final rating by 1%. They believe they have been judged far too harshly.

“It’s a contract for which we did 400 to 500 “lifts” per week, and the City makes all kinds of criticisms against us,” denounces the company’s public relations director, Aubert Gallant.

What we say is that these are the hazards of this type of contract, where there are human beings working in difficult conditions of rain, snow and mud. There may sometimes be some shortcomings.

Aubert Gallant, director of public relations at Ricova

He states in particular that trucks sometimes had difficulty accessing containers due to road works, which explains why the collection schedule was not always respected.

“We too could give the City a bad rating because, as customers, they are very poor payers,” adds Mr. Gallant, who emphasizes that Ricova does not encounter such problems in the 70 other cities where it is present. present.

Already, Services Ricova is on a blacklist which makes it ineligible for any municipal contract in Montreal since June 8, 2022, for a period of five years, because the company is accused by the Inspector General of having used deception to sell its recovered materials abroad to Montreal sorting centers.

In this case, Ricova is suing the City and the Inspector General’s office, accusing them of “bad faith”, while Montreal is also suing Ricova for nearly 4 million, to recover profits from the resale of the contents of the recycling bins. .

The new litigation comes shortly after the City was ordered to pay $1 million to Ricova for being too intransigent in managing a blue bin collection contract, withholding payments owed to the company without valid reason, pushing it to the brink of bankruptcy. The municipal administration is appealing this judgment, rendered in January.


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