The Ottumwa Courier

July 3, 2013

Sioux City may cut curbside glass recycling


Ottumwa Courier

---- — SIOUX CITY, Iowa (AP) — Sioux City is considering an end to curbside glass recycling after officials concluded there are impractical costs associated with it.

The City Council is expected to vote Monday in favor of removing glass from the list of items that can be thrown into curbside recycling bins, the Sioux City Journal reported (http://bit.ly/17FoUrR ). Plastic, aluminum cans and paper will still be accepted.

The city's Environment Advisory Board made the recommendation in May. The eight-member panel said glass had declined in value, making its processing impractical without passing higher costs to customers.

"The main reason we're recommending this is to try and avoid any increase in (garbage) fees in the future," said city Environmental Advisory Board member Terry Glade.

The newspaper reported that all five council members said they plan to approve the change, which would go into effect in July. They will encourage residents to cash in bottles for refunds instead.

Plastic, glass and paper processing has been available in Sioux City since 2006. Property owners pay $1.75 per month.

Contractor Gill Hauling Inc., of Jackson, Neb., helps move the curbside bins. Owner Leonard Gill has expressed concern about the cost of transporting glass to a Kansas City, Mo., firm. He said the majority of glass that's collected are beer and wine bottles that could be redeemed in Sioux City. Iowa has a 5-cent deposit on beer, soft drink and wine containers.

Glade of the environmental board said bottle deposit makes more sense and would save money.

"The main issue with glass is that it ends up being broken and contaminates the rest of the recyclable materials and devalues them," Glade said. "We as a board feel there's better ways for glass to be recycled."

The board suggests the city create a public awareness campaign about the change as it phases out the glass recycling program.

Jim Redmond, of the Northwest Iowa Sierra Club, said the proposal is disappointing because the group has worked hard with the city in creating the glass pickup system.

"Unfortunately society has moved away from recycling things. You use something once and toss it away," he said.

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Information from: Sioux City Journal, http://www.siouxcityjournal.com