For years, the City of Jonesboro has been picking up yard waste and debris. With no composting facility at this time, that debris has been piling up at the landfill. According to Jonesboro Mayor Harold Perrin, something has to be done.
"The city is either going to have to get into the compost facility business--if we do that then we know that that cost is going to be at least 2 and a half to 3 times more cost on the front end than simply buying the incinerator," said Perrin.
Perrin says the incinerator the city is looking into buying comes with a 450 thousand dollar price tag with minimal maintenance and upkeep costs. If purchased, Perrin says the incinerator would be placed on city-owned property next to 63 near Joe Mack Campbell Park.
"All you really have to have is a front end loader, which we already have, to take the debris or the 2 by 4's the contractors would bring us and take it and put it in the incinerator, light the incinerator and that's it," said Perrin.
Perrin says the ash that's left over could be given away or even sold. In addition, he says there's very little if any smoke emitted.
"It's all controlled by electricity and once you turn the fans on you actually create a vacuum. That burns at such a high degree that there's nothing that comes off of there," said Perrin.
Perrin says right now, the city is working to get permits from the ADEQ. Perrin estimates this incinerator would save the city at least a million and a half dollars plus yearly operating costs of a compost facility.
"I think it would be a cost savings on the front end and would just go forward on it. So, I think it's a great deal for Jonesboro, no question about it," said Perrin.
As mentioned, the incinerator would dispose of yard waste and debris. Household waste, for example, would not be put into the incinerator.
This issue goes before city council on October 20th.