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Washington Township gets grant for new recycling baler

February 13, 2013|By JENNIFER FITCH | waynesboro@herald-mail.com

WAYNESBORO, Pa. — A state grant will allow the Washington Township (Pa.) Supervisors to purchase a baling machine for the municipal recycling center, which experienced financial losses last year largely due to repairs on the existing baler.

The township recently received news that it has been awarded $205,754 from a Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection recycling development and implementation program.

That grant will be used to purchase a new baler and related equipment, Township Manager Mike Christopher said. Hopefully, the new machine will be installed in early summer, he said.

A baler compresses and bales certain recyclable items for transport.

Although the township spent $27,000 on repairs to the existing baler last year and recycling was down, the adjacent transfer station off Pa. 16 did provide revenue to temper those losses. The transfer station finished the year $59,375 in the black, according to township documents.

Still, the transfer station typically would bring in more revenue than it did, Christopher said.

“A lot of that is (a lack of) demolition waste,” he said, saying fewer materials have been brought in from construction sites.

At a Washington Township Supervisors meeting Wednesday, Supervisor Stephen Kulla congratulated Christopher on obtaining the grant award. Supervisor William Conrad echoed Kulla’s remarks.

“That’s a lot of work,” Conrad said of the application.

Christopher said he anticipates the recycling center doing more work with aluminum cans this year to generate revenue.

Because it doesn’t do single-stream recycling in which items such as cans, plastic bottles and cardboard are thrown into the same bin, Washington Township is no longer taking in materials from IESI, Waste Management and other commercial haulers.

Christopher said in a previous interview the recycling center instead will focus on the needs of residents, other individual drop-off customers, private contractors and municipalities, including Chambersburg borough, for which it does recycling.

The Washington Township Recycling Center recycled 3,118 tons of material, including yard waste, in 2012.

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