AUGUST 2011
                                        

A Closer Look E-mail the author

D&C Solid Waste Services
Cindy Neuroth • 605-339-3853

Cindy Neuroth is the “C” in D&C Solid Waste Services. Co-owner with her husband Dan, Cindy said that “it depends on when you catch me, what title I have at the time.”

The Neuroths

The Neuroths have had their residential garbage and recycling business in Sioux Falls, South Dakota, for 23 years, but Dan grew up in the industry. His father had his own waste hauling business, and Dan worked there as he was growing up. Later, he worked for one of his brothers who had started his own waste business.

Finally, he and his wife founded D&C. Cindy said, “At one time, there were six family members in the garbage business.”

In the early years, the business was a little easier because “there were a lot less rules, less regulations,” according to Cindy. At that time, they also had two small children who went along on the routes with them, and when they got into school, the parents would stop by with the garbage truck to drop them off or pick them up when needed. If there were school events, they’d park the trucks, attend the events, and get back to work again.

The recycling part of the business started out with a triple-sort system, but went to single-stream about two years ago. “We take it to a recycling center in town and they process it,” Cindy explained. “We pick it up – we do the collecting.”

Besides the regular trash and recycling pickups, D&C will make special pickups for white goods that go to a landfill where they are processed to remove the Freon and then recycled. They also make separate pick-ups for tires that initially go to a landfill and are picked up from there by a contractor. Yard waste is also a separate item.

D&C has five trucks and six employees – four of whom are family. “I do a route and I do roll-offs. I help change the oil and help repair trucks,” Cindy said. “I kind of enjoy being on the road. Customers like that it’s a woman and also an owner – so they can talk to an owner.” She said that being on the truck meant that “you’re busy all the time – from the time you start until the end of the day.”

“We used to be twice a week,” Cindy said of the residential pickups, “and now we’re once a week.” The twice-weekly pickups stopped in 1995, when recycling started. “Ninety-five percent of our customers participate in recycling,” Cindy said. “That’s the highest percentage in Sioux Falls for recycling” among the 35 companies that offer the service. “We educate our customers and send out information twice a year. We were one of the first ones to offer single-stream in Sioux Falls.”

Cindy is pleased that her kids are taking interest in the family business. At first the kids were just going along for the ride, and later they helped out with billing, or putting addresses on envelopes. “When my daughter was in high school, she got her license,” Cindy said, explaining that 14 was the legal age to get a license in South Dakota. As soon as her daughter got her license, she drove a truck while her younger brother helped out. “Because it’s family, insurance was easier,” she added.

Now, they’re both working for the company. “They came to us for jobs,” Cindy said. Her daughter works in the office, but can drive a truck if one needs to be picked up or dropped off for repairs. Her son drives a route.

While Cindy likes having her kids nearby, and it’s great to have two very dependable employees, there’s another benefit. “Customers remember the kids from when they were little. They like that.”