Sunday, May 29, 2011

Another reason why you should recycle more and throw away less

Several readers emailed me with comments and questions on the recycling story I wrote a couple of months back, and I wanted to address one in particular. I’d mentioned that 50 percent of the money made through the recycling program comes back to the city to offset cost increases in the contract with Republic and we should all participate as much as possible.

Deb Webster wrote to me: “In your article on garbage collection/recycling in Noblesville you mentioned that our recycling actually provides a kick-back of sorts to the city's bill by Republic. I have never read that anywhere but in your column! This information needs to be posted on our water bills, on a banner in town, the city's website... Is it possible to get people recycling to the point that it would subsidize our garbage costs sufficiently to stop raising our bills?

Dan and I produce more recycling by far than garbage. We always have a full to overflowing recycle bin and one bag of garbage in our big garbage bin. We're just 2 people. I would think families would far out strip us in recycling if they were just more aware.”

I put the question to Len Finchum, Noblesville’s Street Commissioner, who replied that yes, half of the monies made from our recycle program reverts back to the City to help offset the expenses, and he agreed that if it was posted from time to time to the Noblesville residents it may help with their decision to recycle more.

Finchum also stated that while the return of monies helps with the recycle portion of the contract, the overall contract cost outweighs the possibilities of the funds being reduced enough to save a substantial amount, but it does help.

Finchum went on to say, “If Noblesville showed that it could recycle to a level exceeding the general trash amounts, then the contract could be written to address this. The contract will be up next year and I will look at the verbiage to possibly address a tonnage comparison of trash and recycling. Anything is possible if enough people support the idea and put forth the effort to see it done. Thank you for your thoughts and positive support that Noblesville residents can make better things happen.”

Thanks for your great question, Deb, and for your thoughtful response, Len. And again, rock on, recyclers.

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