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Austin, Texas' Waste Services Department Meets ... Fred Durst?


Kyle Hentges, 24, who has lived in Austin for just seven months, told TPM he submitted the idea as a result of "insomnia and boredom." He feels Limp Bizkit is worthy of being associated with waste services.

"I guess you could say i did it for the nookie," Hentges said in a joking reference to Limp Bizkit's first single. Spoiler alert: he's not actually a Limp Bizkit fan.

Jennifer Herber, the public information officer for Austin's Solid Wastes Services, told TPM the search for a new name fits in with other initiatives the department is looking to achieve, including a "zero waste goal."

"We wanted a name that reflects what we really do," she said. "When people hear solid waste, they don't always think of trash and garbage, they may think of something else." Austin's Solid Waste Services Department doesn't actually manage the city's sewage.

Herber emphasized Austin's creativity -- the town is host to the popular music and media festival South By Southwest -- in the department's decision to hold an online vote.

So what does she think of creative leader of the poll?

"We're having fun with it, actually," Herber said. "We kind of underestimated how big of an influence he might have on the waste and recycling world." Herber added that Durst is apparently excited about the news, too. On February 4, Durst tweeted: "I want to thank all of you who are helping me in Austin. I hope we win."

Despite leading at the polls, city won't be adopting Durst's name anytime soon.

"Unfortunately, we're not going to be able to go with that name," Herber said. "It doesn't reflect what we really do."

Even if his submission doesn't make it onto the sides of garbage trucks around Austin, Hengtes said he hopes the attention will cause people to acknowledge the people who work in waste services.

"They don't get enough credit," he said.

See the latest results here.

About The Author


David Taintor is a news editor at Talking Points Memo. Previously, he worked at NBC News and Adweek. He's a native of Minnesota. Reach him at