North Miami Beach votes down garbage privatization -- for now

The North Miami Beach council voted early this morning against starting negotiations with Waste Pro, the company picked to privatize the city's garbage pickup.  

Before the vote about 40 people, many of them city sanitation workers who don't want to lose their jobs, gathered outside City Hall to protest privatizing the city's garbage service (see video).

The privatization issue is dividing the city. Proponents of outsourcing garbage pickup, led by Mayor George Vallejo, said the move would save millions of dollars. Opponents, led by Councilwoman Marlen Martell, said the savings weren't real and a private company wouldn't provide the same level of service as the city workers.

The down vote doesn't mean it's over. The issue will come back to the council for more discussion.