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Recent Articles >> Environment


Recycling and trash collection changes offer convenience, rewards
12/18/2011

Recycling and trash collection changes offer convenience, rewards

Hagerstown, MD - Life is about to get easier for residents in the City of Hagerstown. Starting in the New Year, trash, recycling and yard waste will all be collected one day a week. It's a simpler collection schedule compared to the current calendar, where residents have to remember to set out the correct items three or even four days a week. City officials are hoping to see more people recycle as there will be even more convenience and incentives offered through a rewards program.
The changes are geared to modernize the program and bring it in line with what other municipalities are engaging in across the country. "It just makes sense to recycle and re-use products, saving natural resources and landfill space," says Rodney Tissue, director of Parks and Engineering for the City of Hagerstown. The City hopes to divert up to twice as much solid waste from the landfill with increased recycling under the new system.
The program changes make it more convenient to recycle, and by April 2012 City residents will be able to cash in on rewards through an incentive program, simply by recycling! Each household will receive a new roll out container in early 2012. The containers have a unique identifier that shows the collector, which residents are participating, which in turn determines a number of reward points the resident earns. Those points can go towards discounts at local businesses or you can donate to support green education at a local City school. Furthermore, residents can encourage their neighbors to start recycling more. The more people in our community who participate, the more rewards participants earn. Details on this program will be released in March 2012.
Trash collection can be scaled back to one day since people will produce less trash if they recycle. "If you just recycle paper and cardboard, you can cut your trash quantity in half," Tissue adds. "We are asking residents to consider their habits and focus more on what we can recycle and less on just throwing items in a landfill." Recycling will be even more convenient because there's no need for sorting under the new program. Glass, paper, plastic and metal can all be combined in one container. Residents can continue to use their City-issued containers until the new bins are rolled out in April.
City Center businesses will also be able to set out recycling after the first of the year. Each business is limited to a 95-gallon maximum per week.
Hagerstown has been divided into six different zones, which will determine each household's set out night. The set out night is the same as the residents' current recycling night. Zone F, which is identified as the City Center Zone, is the exception to the "one night only" rule; those residents will have an additional night to set out trash only. Households can find which zone they live at www.hagerstownmd.org/Engineering/hagerstownrecycles.asp
The City of Hagerstown is also changing haulers with the new program. Waste Management will be collecting trash, recycling and yard waste, so City officials ask for residents' patience as the workers become familiar with the community and their new routes. In addition, yard waste is only collected seasonally, so residents should only set out those items between April and December.

Residents who have questions can visit www.hagerstownmd.org or call the City's "Hagerstown Recycles" hotline at 301-739-8577 Ext 106.

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