(12/4) Emmitsburg Town Council was briefed this week on the status of the new Frederick County recycling program.
Michael Marshner, director of the Frederick County Division of Utilities and Solid Waste Management (DUSWM), told the council that the "single stream" recycling program could be in effect during January, and that distribution of the new containers is in progress.
Single stream recycling means that the recyclables can be co-mixed, and not separated by type.
Marshner stated that the new, larger containers required by the new program are being distributed throughout the county "even as we speak," and that some 10,000 customers have already received the containers by Tuesday out of the 55,000 household existing recycling participants that will be served in the first round.
A second round is planned later for new recycling customers.
"You’ll be seeing yours (containers) in this area in the next three, possibly four weeks," Marshner said. " It could be just right around Christmas. They’re trying to get it done by the end of the year."
"Obviously if we have some inclement weather it (distribution) could be pushed into January," he noted.
"At the same time," he stated, "we’re (the county) switching from one contract collection to another. We’re going from an 18 gallon blue bin to our standard...new 65 gallon wheeled cart."
Marshner said the county does have a 35 gallon cart and a 95 gallon cart to service those who need differing capacity.
"Individual needs may vary. This (the 65 gallon container) is what most residents will see if they can accommodate that. If they can’t, they can stay with the blue bin and we’ll add a second bin to that," the DUSWM director said.
Marshner stated those in row homes who find the large wheeled cart inconvenient can stay with the smaller bins.
"If you’re the middle townhouse in the row of 12 townhouses you may not have a convenient way to move this to the back…or stow it at the end of the day…they can stay with the blue bin program," he said.
In addition, collection of recyclables will change from weekly pickup to an every other week collection schedule.
Marshner described the change as "a cost containment measure."
He said, "The cost for collection of recycling is increasing every year. At this point the only way we could afford the program is to go to every other week."
The new containers have a list of items that can be recycled on their top.
Among the list of acceptable items, film plastic bags from the grocery stores have been added.
The tops (clean portions) of pizza containers (usually just the lids) may be added. Hardbound books will now be accepted.
In addition, large appliance boxes can be set next to the recycling container.
The new county program "expands not only in size but in materials we can accept and that the recovery facility can process for us," Marshner stated.
"This program is intended to be flexible. Whatever your preferences we’re going to try and match the right container with your particular needs," he told the council.
The new containers will be delivered by contractor to participating homes. Townhouses will receive door hangers offering those residents options.
However," the director stated, "you can’t use them (the new containers) until we tell you we’re ready to start picking them up."
The contract to have them picked up will "probably not starting until January."
Rick Fulton may be contacted at firstname.lastname@example.org.
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