(The following is an open letter sent to Athens Services and Recycle L.A.)

My family owns several Westside apartments and Athens has been our outstanding provider for many years.

Two years ago, when the City Council passed the new trash hauling arrangement, the union trade group called “LANE” agreed that small apartment owners would not have to make any special arrangements in connection with recycling or other labor-intense protocols.  The big trash hauler, which would be reduced to seven, would have the facilities at their corporate areas to remove recycled items and take other appropriate actions consistent with state law.

As you’re more than well aware, the apartment owners are not able to instruct tenants to sort or separate trash because this would be considered by the Los Angeles City Attorney’s office as a form of “tenant harassment”.

As you’re also well aware, the current annual rental adjustment on rent is restricted to 3%.  It’s based upon an arcane CPI formula which does not address or capture trash hauling.  So, there’s no money whatsoever to encourage or promote the tenants to cooperate.

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State law does not require resident managers at units of less than 16.  Our maintenance and gardeners are difficult to control.  So the trash hauling companies need to provide bins or other equipment at no additional cost that will promote or help the tenants fully understand their obligations.  Remember, any activity on behalf of an owner will be viewed as tenant harassment.

LANE indicated that the union-driven big trash hauling groups that will ultimately get awarded the franchises (monopoly) will ultimately handle these items.

If you want to print signage and post it at my units, please do so.  If you want to create flyers to help the tenants, please do so.  However, we were promised at the outset that the trash hauling groups would be responsible for these activities and that our total costs would not be increased.

Again, Athens has been an exceptionally outstanding provider.  They’re very professional and were very reasonably priced.  They’re honest and appropriate.  I know they will do things that are fair for small family-owned apartment businesses.


[AOA:  As you know by now, some trash haulers have doubled what owners had been paying before our gracious Mayor and City Council members granted them and the union a citywide monopoly. Again, “monopolies cause prices to go up and service to go down”.

And would you believe that Mayors and City Council members also know this and still vote to make property owners pay the consequences.

Please support our lawsuit and help to stop these ________.  (I’ll let you fill in the blank).  Also, please fill in the blanks in the form link that follows below and try to really fill in the blanks for dollars contributed.  Also, please send a copy of this to the Mayor and/or call his office and complain loud and clear!  Mayor Eric Garcetti: [email protected], City Hall, 200 N. Spring Street, 90012 – phone number 213-978-0600.  Thank you, Dan Faller]


Michael Millman is an Attorney and a Mar Vista activist and can be reached at (310) 477-1201.   

Help Stop the Trash Monopoly!


If you haven’t already done so, please make sure you contact the mayor and your councilpersons regarding your troubles due to this new law.  




Mayor of Los Angeles

Eric GarcettiCity Hall, 200 N. Spring Street, Los Angeles, CA, 90012 – [email protected]


Mailing address for All City Council Members

City Hall, 200 N. Spring Street (Rm #), Los Angeles, CA 90012

District 1 – Gil Cedillo: [email protected] or room 460

District 2 – Paul Krekorian: [email protected] or  room 435

District 3 – Bob Blumenfield: [email protected] or room 415

District 4 – David Ryu: [email protected] or room 425

District 5 – Paul Koretz: [email protected] or room 440

District 6 – Nury Martinez: [email protected] or room 470

District 7 – Councilwoman Elect Monica Rodriguez: [email protected] or  room 455

District 8 – Marqueece Harris- Dawson: [email protected] or room 450

District 9 – Curren Price: [email protected] or room 420

District 10 – Herb Wesson (President): [email protected] or room 430

District 11 – Mike Bonin: [email protected] or room 475

District 12 – Mitchell Englander (President protempore): [email protected] or room 405

District 13 – Mitch O’Farrell: [email protected] or room 480

District 14 – Jose Huizar: [email protected] or room 465

District 15 – Joe Buscaino: [email protected] or room 410