BAKER — The City Council on Tuesday renewed its solid waste services contract and entered into a new agreement with its waste service company to provide recycling carts to residents who recycle household trash.

The current contract with BFI Waste Services LLC, doing business as Allied Waste Services of Baton Rouge, expires in May 2014.

By renewing its contract with the waste disposal company more than a year early, the city gets a 30-cent per household cost reduction for garbage and trash services, said Allied Waste spokeswoman Karla Swacker.

The city’s current per-household cost of $20.18 rolls back to $19.88 per household in May.

The city also plans to update its recycling program, officials said.

Customers who presently recycle household trash will get another 96-gallon container, the same size being used for trash and garbage, for the new program.

The new cans will have a green lid carrying instructions on what items are eligible for recycling.

Other business coming before the council included:

GAS LINES: The council decided to seek bids on Phase IV of the project to upgrade Baker’s municipal natural gas distribution system.

Mayor Harold Rideau said the project involves replacing old metal gas pipelines in the Morvant, Leland and Baker Heights area.

Rideau said the city has a $675,000 grant as well as capital improvement money to pay for the project.

The mayor said city government approved the project in the 1990s, but lack of money and environmental requirements that had to be met combined to delay the improvements until now.

MEDICARE INSURANCE:The council agreed to give municipal employees the option of buying into the Medicare insurance program.

Rideau said some employees in years past were not interested in the program, but have expressed an interest in getting into the system now.

The program applies to city workers hired before April 1, 1986.