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Waste and recycling plan criticized for lack of detail

Kercheval refers to document as 'bureaucratic paperweight'

September 21, 2010|By HEATHER KEELS

Washington County Commissioners and citizens alike criticized a 10-year waste and recycling plan Tuesday, saying it was not user-friendly and did not have enough detail about how its goals should be implemented.

The document was prepared by county staff in response to a requirement by the Maryland Department of the Environment, environmental planner Bill Stachoviak said.

During a public hearing on the document Tuesday, Boonsboro Recycling Task Force member Barbara Wetzel said the document lacked detail, particularly in its "plan of action" section.

That section, a summary chart, lists "curbside recycling" as a program category, but the only action items listed are an evaluation of a curbside program in July 2010 and a household survey in July 2011.

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Commissioner Kristin B. Aleshire also questioned that entry.

"When I read that, the only action I see is that you're going to send out a household survey, and that to me isn't an action (plan for how) you're going to accomplish something within the next 10-year period," Aleshire said.

Commissioner James F. Kercheval said he would be fine with submitting the document with a few minor changes if necessary to meet a state deadline, but would like to see it rehashed to make it more useful as a reference for future commissioners.

"As a general statement, I wasn't really pleased with what we have," he said. "I mean, to me, it's just going to turn into a bureaucratic paperweight."

Stachoviak said the plan must be submitted to the state by the end of the year. He agreed to see what changes staff could make between now and then and to take the document back to the commissioners at a future meeting.

The plan is available on the county's website at http://www.washco-md.net.

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