Independence Co. to eliminate residential recycling pickup

Independence Co. to eliminate residential recycling pickup

INDEPENDENCE COUNTY, AR (KAIT) - The recycling program being run by Independence County is about to undergo some changes, resulting in the loss of curbside pickup for residents.

The Independence County Quorum Court's Solid Waste Committee has voted to stop all household recycling pickup for 60 days, but County Judge Robert Griffin expects that during their regular meeting Monday they will choose to end the curbside pickup altogether.

"At the same time, we will continue picking up business-class recycling and also cardboard," Griffin said. "We'll be picking up cardboard in the businesses and the outlying areas also."

Griffin explained that there is no requirement that curbside recycling be made available.

The reason they were able to provide that service county-wide in the past was with the use of community service workers.

Recently, the number of inmates made available for community service was cut because of a policy change at the jail.

Sheriff Shawn Stephens said the changes were made to the community service allowance because of safety concerns.

Since that number of workers has been reduced to eight, the recycling services will need to be cut back as well.

"The small cities, since they have more limited recycling, we will park trailers at convenient spots for them and we will have a driver come out, pick up the trailer, we'll take it to the facility and then again the route drivers will be able to process that," Griffin said.

The locations of these dumpsters have not been released yet and the judge said it will most likely be up to the mayors.

Batesville is the exception to these dumpsters because it is the largest city, according to Griffin. The county will no longer provide any type of recycling service to residential areas there.

"And I notified the mayor a couple of weeks ago that this was coming so he could be thinking about it," Griffin said.

There will also be changes to the trash pickup.

The county will be moving to side-arm trash trucks because they require fewer workers on the routes.

"That also eliminates the need for some of the community service workers," Griffin said. "Where we needed two per truck it would be cut down to only needing one."

Griffin will present a proposal to the quorum court Monday night that they buy three more side-arm trash trucks to add to the one they have already purchased.

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