Sunday, January 13, 2008
Actions Speak Louder than Words
It is a phenomenon that has happens each year. The Raytown Recycling Center located at the Joe Herndon Vo-Tech Center on 350 Highway had to shut down early last weekend because there was not any room left for recyclables. The center, which is open only two weekends a month, was inundated with Christmas recyclables. That means that many people kept their recyclables through the holiday weekend (in other words, two weeks) rather than leaving the material for their trash hauler. “We made certain all of our containers were empty before opening for the weekend,” said Dave Frazier, Assistant Public Works Director for Raytown. “The cardboard, paper and aluminum/tin can containers filled up quickly. The recycled glass container was also nearly full. We simply ran out of room for the material being brought in.” If ever there was a spontaneous show of support for recycling in a community, this is it. Raytowners have spoken quietly and eloquently with their actions. This was no organized effort, the need for a recycling center was, and is, self-evident. At a recent meeting of the Raytown Recycling Committee, Mayor David Bower told the committee that some City Councilmembers have suggested shutting down the Recycling Center. The center will have to be moved by next July due to construction of a new Walmart at the current location. Calls for closing down the center are irresponsible and nonsensical. Recycling not only makes ecological sense, it is beginning to make economic sense as well. The Raytown Recycling Committee has been hard at work looking for a new location for the center. Business interests have been contacted. There are indications that the recycling center will have a viable economic engine of its own – possibly paying for its own operation. “We are hopeful that we can bring a new site to the table by the end of February,” said Alderman Greg Walters, who is also Chairman of the Recycling Committee. “The more we (the Committee) learn, the more we are confident that Raytown has a bright future in the area of Recycling.” The Recycling Committee was formed last summer by Mayor Bower to find a new location for recycling center and to research and recommend recycling programs to the Board of Aldermen. What Other Cities are Doing . . . In 2002 the voters of Liberty, Missouri approved a recycling program for their city. The program set trash collection rates at $9.99* per month. The rates pay for weekly recycling curbside collection, monthly drop-off center recycling, and access to household hazardous waste collection. Liberty residents also qualify to participate in a yard waste collection program as well. *Rates have risen since 2002. Current trash hauling rates for Liberty are $12.31 per month. The average cost in Raytown is $15.00 per month. Rate information source, Mid-America Regional Council, 2006 Report.