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Franklin County Commissioners laud recycling efforts

April 17, 2001

Franklin County Commissioners laud recycling efforts



By STACEY DANZUSO / Staff Writer, Chambersburg


The Franklin County Commissioners recognized county residents making a difference in environmental education Tuesday while proclaiming April Earth Awareness Month.

The commissioners spotlighted Boy Scout Troop 128 and Washington Township for their efforts in boosting the county's recycling rate to 23.7 percent of all household trash. The commissioners also acknowledged the county's contract with Curbside, Inc., which will provide regular curbside collection of household hazardous waste and further increase recycling efforts.

"We want to get out the word that (recycling) is serious business," said County Commissioner G. Warren Elliott. "We've continued to put our money where our mouth is and I think we are the first county in the state to make the household hazardous waste program part of our regular recycling."

In the last hazardous waste pickup in 1999, Curbside picked up 44 tons of materials in the county.

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"That hazardous waste would have taken up space in a landfill or been disposed of down drains otherwise," Elliott said.

Elliott also presented a new Family Recycling Guide Tuesday that will be distributed to 37,000 households today in the Franklin Shopper and will be available in municipal offices. The guide provides a listing of recycling centers, recyclable materials and general environmental hints.

The commissioners presented Certificates of Appreciation to Troop 128 and Washington Township, which both won state Waste Watcher Awards this month in recognition of their recycling efforts.

Paul Holbrook, scout leader of Troop 128 in Chambersburg, said the troop is now collecting 7 tons of newspapers each week. That's up from 300 pounds on their first effort in 1987, he said.

Last year, the troop collected 3,000 tons of newspapers in the rear of First Lutheran Church, 43 W. Washington Street, Chambersburg, and used the money to finance trips.

Holbrook and scouts Robby Norris, 16, and Scott Knepper, 17, accepted the certificate.

Michael Christopher, Washington Township manager, accepted the certificate recognizing his community's recycling efforts.

Washington Township recycled more than 46 percent of its household waste last year, or 3,500 tons, Christopher said.

He said the development of a processing program to sort out broken glass accounted for 80 tons last year.

The next goal of the Washington Township Transfer Station and Recycling Center is to begin collecting magazines.

"We think we could do 500 tons of magazines a year, but we need to do it in a way to break even," Christopher said.

The county's recycling rate increased from 20.6 percent in 1999 to 23.7 percent last year. The state began mandatory recycling programs in 1990, and legislation set an eventual goal of 25 percent for counties.

There are now curbside or drop-off recycling programs for every municipality in the county.

Franklin County residents can call 1-800-HHW-PKUP to schedule a collection of materials.

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