DeLuca family sells Chicago Heights garbage-hauling business
BY CASEY TONER firstname.lastname@example.org October 23, 2012 7:02PM
Clem DeLuca talks about his business, Skyline Disposal, at its location at 66 East 24th Street in Chicago Heights, IL on Friday October 5, 2012. The DeLuca family is selling the business to a larger disposal business. | Matt Marton~Sun-Times Media
Updated: November 25, 2012 6:02AM
The Chicago Heights garbage-hauling business long owned by the family of Illinois State Rep. Anthony DeLuca is under new ownership.
Skyline Disposal, 66 E. 24th St., recently was sold to Republic Services, a publicly traded company headquartered in Arizona.
DeLuca’s parents, Clem and Loretta DeLuca, had run the company since 1980. They bought it from Loretta’s father, Joseph Laport, who founded the business in 1954.
Skyline Disposal provides garbage removal for 22 communities, including Chicago Heights, South Chicago Heights, Ford Heights, Glenwood, Sauk Village, Flossmoor, Olympia Fields and University Park. The business employs about two dozen people.
Clem DeLuca, 73, said he decided to sell the company because it wasn’t as profitable as it once was and Anthony DeLuca (D-Chicago Heights) did not want to take it over. Anthony, however, will keep an office at the Chicago Heights location and stay on as a consultant for Republic Services.
Clem DeLuca said the sale closed Oct. 5. He estimated the business’s total assets are worth between $3 million and $4 million, including a 31/2-acre property in Chicago Heights and machinery such as garbage trucks, forklifts, paper shredders and more.
Republic Services spokeswoman Peg Mulloy confirmed the takeover but declined further comment.
Clem DeLuca said 99 percent of Skyline Disposal employees would retain their jobs, seniority and pay.
“This is what makes me so happy,” Clem DeLuca said. “My guys were crying. They were treated so fairly.”
He said other suitors courted him when he began talking about selling the company a year and a half ago, but he sold it to Republic Services because it agreed to keep the Chicago Heights site operational.
“It was too important for me to let go,” Clem DeLuca said. “A lot of these companies weren’t going to invest in Chicago Heights.”
To accommodate the new company, the Chicago Heights City Council earlier this month terminated the city’s garbage contract with Skyline Disposal and tapped Allied Waste Transportation — a subsidiary of Republic Services — to take over.
Now retired, Clem DeLuca said he plans to stop by the business regularly to check in and answer any questions.
“I’m not going anywhere,” he said. “I left my business in good hands, I left my men in good hands and all the people I service in good hands.”
Loretta DeLuca, the company’s president, said she plans to continue performing with the Chicago Heights Drama Group and singing in the choir at St. Agnes Parish.
“Skyline has been part of my life since I was 11 years old,” she said. “I wish my father was here to see what his business has developed into and what it holds for the future.”