It’s the holiday season and it’s likely you may end up with more things to recycle and dispose of as you celebrate.
Through a partnership of public and private sector resources, we manage approximately 1 million tons of solid waste a year. Though the vast majority of county homes and businesses are served by private collection companies, chances are some of the approximately 350 employees in our Solid Waste Management Program play a role.
“Our positions run the gamut, from laborers and equipment operators, to technicians and logistical support specialists, to customer service and communications specialists, all the way to traditional professions such as engineers, environmental scientists and accountants,” says Charlie Forbes, recycling, compliance and planning branch chief. Their schedules vary from the traditional “9-to-5” settings and also “dawn ’til dusk” roles, seven days per week in the field.
We recycle a lot more than just paper, cans and bottles. The A-Z List of Recycling and Trash Topics includes close to 100 subjects.
- Yard waste.
- Household hazardous waste such as paint and motor oil.
- Electronics such as computers, televisions, cords and stereo equipment.
- Items for reuse such as bicycles and empty propane cylinders.
- Woody yard waste is ground into mulch that is available free to county residents, based on supply.
Our solid waste team also disposes of contraband and other materials seized by the Police Department, court system and “off-spec” manufacturing and retail items. These can include controlled substances, drug paraphernalia and guns, but also unusual items such as old public safety clothing, obsolete postage stamps, clothing and other manufactured goods that failed to meet quality standards, and food and beverages that were improperly labelled or past their due date.
“We are always looking for ways to improve our services and respond to customers’ requests,” says Forbes.
Regardless of your weekly trash/recycling hauler (private or county), there are some items that won’t be picked up curbside such as hazardous waste. Here’s where to take those items this holiday season (note: some materials taken to the I-66 Transfer Station or I-95 Landfill Complex are subject to disposal fees or special processing fees).