| Nov 10, 2011

Recycling rates average, cost through the roof in AH

Addington Highlands Council received a presentation by Cambium Environmental of Peterborough concerning their recycling program.

Dave Bucholtz from Cambium said that the diversion rate at Addington Highlands Landfill sites is a little better than average for its category at 22%, but that because of hauling costs the cost of recycling is about triple the average in its category.

All information used in the report came from 2009 data.

Each ton of recyclables cost $1,660 to dispose of in AH, as opposed to an average cost of $565 in its category (Addington Highlands is compared to rural municipalities in Southern Ontario that do not have curb-side pickup service). That amounts to an average cost of $99 per household for recycling in Addington Highlands.

A reasonable goal for the township, according to Bucholtz, would be to increase the recycling percentage to 25% by the end of 2013 while keeping the costs per tonnage flat, and not let them go up with the rate of inflation.

The Cambium report pointed to a significant potential increase in the number of tonnage of recycling. In 2009 there were 218 tons of material that was “available for diversion” and only 131 tons (60%) was diverted, leaving 86 tons (40%) as a potential increase in diverted material in future years.

Bucholtz recommended a few initiatives that are designed to improve the system.

“You have a very robust recycling program in Addington Highlands. A plan moving forward could include improved public education and training, and perhaps an enhancement of recycling centres,” he said.

Included in his recommendations are a $10,000 public education program, about $1,000 in training programs for staff, and $7,000 for enhancement of recycling depots.

There are opportunities for matching funding from Waste Diversion Ontario (WDO) for the initiatives that Bucholtz pointed to, just as 50% of the Cambium report itself was paid for by WDO.

“You talk about public education initiatives. I run across people all the time who say they do not understand how the program works. And this is after we have conducted education campaigns, on our website, in tax bills, at the sites themselves,” said Councilor Tony Fritsch, one of only two councilors attending this week's council meeting.

“We brought in the $2 bag and a rebate for every bag of recycling as an incentive to recycling, but Tony is right; there are people who do not want to know how recycling works,” said Reeve Henry Hogg.

Dave Bucholtz said that he hopes the report will be referred to and that a follow up report should be completed in about four years’ time.

One more request for free dumping – Andy Anderson appeared before Council requesting free dumping for the remains of a house once owned by Winnie Gutsell, which is now owned by Marie Jeffries. A part of the house was taken down, using funding provided by Lennox and Addington County, but the material is lying in a pile at the rear of the property, quite close to the Kaladar dump site. The new owner of the property asked for free dumping of the material and the township has offered $150 off of the dumping costs.

“It would be better off for everyone if the township simply removed the material and was done with it,” Anderson said.

“We received a sarcastic letter in response to our offer of a $150 break, which is not the best way to make us want to sweeten the offer,” said Henry Hogg. “I ask you, was the material there when she bought the property?”

“That is very hard nosed,” said Anderson.

“Sometimes you have to be,” said Hogg.

“There are other property owners with material that has been acquired through peculiar circumstances who would appreciate waiving tipping fees,” said Deputy Mayor Bill Cox.

Henry Hogg said Council would consider the renewed request at their next meeting.

RFP rescinded: A request for proposal (RFP) concerning the preliminary design for a combined township office and fire hall on a lot on Hwy. 41 just south of Northbrook (next to Addison's Restaurant) was rescinded by Council. Potential bidders said the RFP was too vague. A new RFP will be released after Council meets for a special session next Tuesday, (November 15) at 9:00 in Flinton.

Denbigh Community Centre update -

Tony Fritsch presented an update into the ongoing renovations to the former Denbigh Schoolhouse as it transitions into a new life as a community centre.

Ninety-nine percent of the work has been completed on the clinic area for the Lakelands Family Health Team.

Work is proceeding on a number of other fronts, including the septic system, which needs to be altered to accommodate a parking lot, and the heating system.

It will cost $5,900 for a new controller, which is $1,400 over budget, but Fritsch assured council there are savings coming in on other items that will compensate.

A number of jobs will include a volunteer labour component, with savings being invested in other aspects of the project.

Council approved the $5,900 expenditure and received Fritsch's report for information.


Support local
independant journalism by becoming a patron of the Frontenac News.