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Davie orders nonprofits to remove collection bins across town

For-profit company takes over collection bin business in Davie

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DAVIE, Fla. – Do you really know who you are giving your donations to? Local 10 News has learned that there is surprise and confusion in the town of Davie.

Non-profit organizations that depend on your clothing donations were recently ordered to remove all their collection bins, and the town has brought in a "for profit" company to take over.

"No one has ever told us to take our bins and leave," Major Henry Hudson, of the Salvation Army in Broward County, told Local 10 News.

Four clothing donation bins the Salvation Army used to have in Davie now sit empty in a warehouse.

"It has been devastating. Those bins generated $250,000 a year. We would have sold those clothes in our family stores," Hudson said.

The town of Davie ordered the Salvation Army and Goodwill to remove all their collection bins.

The for-profit company that has taken over the collection bin business, FLSC LLC., has placed new collection bins and trucks in many of the same spots.

Goodwill had to place an employee in the parking lot at 114th Avenue and State Road 84 to clear up any confusion.

A Goodwill collection trailer that was a staple at that location for 25 years has been replaced by a bin from the private company.

Residents are raising an eyebrow.

"Shame on you," one resident said to the town.

Some said the town has created direct competition for the nonprofit organizations.

The new bins and trucks read: "This is not a charity. Items are not tax deductible and support a for profit recycling business."

But many who are donating aren't reading the fine print.

"No, I didn't know that," another resident told Local 10 News investigative reporter Jeff Weinsier.

Under the agreement with FLSC, the town of Davie will receive $100,000, which will go to the town's dwindling endowment fund.

The town has their own list of 12 charities they give too from that fund.

Phillip Holste, the development administrator in Davie, said a study was never conducted to see what the effect would be on Goodwill and the Salvation Army.

"I don't believe a study like that was conducted, because in our opinion, they can continue to operate in the town of Davie," Holste said.

So while the nonprofits can operate, they cannot set up donation bins. The Salvation Army claims the bins generate 60 percent of the goods donated.

Meanwhile, Goodwill had opened two "drop off" stores in Davie and now pays retail rent in two shopping centers.

The Salvation Army can't afford to do that.

The Salvation Army on Broward Boulevard provides housing, rehabilitation, work therapy and counseling to 100 people year round. All of the money to operate the facility comes from local donations.

And when there is a disaster, the Salvation Army is usually first on the scene.

"I'm not happy with the decision they made and I think it is a danger to charity," Hudson said. "They have not considered that part of it. It was more of a selfish consideration (than) what will they do for their town."

Follow Jeff Weinsier on Twitter @jweinsier

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