City of Milford Reforms Recycling Program

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Currently, the City of Milford has been offering a voluntary recycling program for residential customers as part of their overall collection program. So far, any individual who receives trash collection through the City of Milford can request the acquisition of a recycling container that will be picked up on an every other week basis. This voluntary program, however, will see some changes in the near future as all residential customers will have to be provided with a recycling container by September 15, 2011.

The change is due to a new recycling bill in the State of Delaware, Senate Bill No. 234 that mandates that curbside recycling is offered to “all single-family residential customers, including delivery of a wheeled cart”. The City of Milford requested a ruling from DNREC to determine the compliancy y of Milford’s current voluntary program to Senate Bill No. 234. DNREC responded that the City of Milford will have to supply each residential customer with a recycling container.

According to the Public Works Department, the City of Milford currently has 3,146 residential trash customers and 2,108 residential recycling customers. With a stock of around 300 recycling containers the City of Milford will have to provide an additional 738 containers to residential customers. At a cost of $46 per container the City is looking at $33,948 to be complaint with the new State of Delaware recycling law; not including the cost of freight which brings the cost to approximately $36,000.

“Most customers will not be impacted since the majority of our trash collection customers already receive recycling services,” stated City Manager David Baird. “The purchase of the containers will not create any fee increase.”

Senate Bill No. 234 provided for grant and loan money for municipalities in Delaware to be compliant with the new law. There has been one round of grant funding by the State of Delaware which occurred less than a month after the legislation was passed. The City of Milford Public Works Department states that “after attending the pre-grant meeting at DNREC IN Dover, it was decided not to apply for the grant for the reasons being we believed that the City of Milford was compliant with our existing recycling program, and if we did accept grant money it was under the condition that any solid waste disposal rate (i.e. our residential trash rate) would have to be locked in for 3 years.”

On Monday, August 22 City Manager David Baird recommended City Council to authorize the transfer of $40,000 for the purpose of providing recycling containers to all single family residential trash customers in the City of Milford. The transfer of funds was from the Solid Waste Fund Balance account to the Solid Waste Materials & Supplies account. City Council unanimously approved the transfer of funds.

The appropriated funds will be used to order recycling containers and deliver them to residential customers by September 15. The containers must be placed at the curb on designated Thursday mornings before 7:00 am for collection. See the 2011 Recycling Collection Schedule and the Recycling Route Map, at www.cityofmilford.com, to determine which Thursday is your collection day. For further information contact the City of Milford Public Works Department at 302-424-3712.

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