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Grant to Expand and Improve Recycling Services
May 7, 2014
HARRISBURG – House Speaker Sam Smith (R-Jefferson/Indiana/Armstrong) announced today that the Jefferson County Solid Waste Authority has received an $89,100 grant that will significantly expand and simplify recycling services in the county and help to further educate school students and the general public on the methods and benefits of recycling.

“This funding will give the county’s recycling efforts a real shot in the arm,” Smith said.  “The authority has been working hard to maintain the current drop-off recycling program, as well as the educational aspect of the program in schools, even though they had not received a recycling grant since 2008,” he noted.  “There were some administrative issues surrounding the eligibility requirements for the program that we were able to work out with the Department of Environmental Protection.  Now the county’s plans to expand the program can begin to take shape.”

The funds received will be focused in three areas.   A portion of the grant will be used to convert the current “separated” drop-off recycling program to a system, known as “single stream” drop- off, where residents do not have to sort materials before placing them in the recycling container.

Another portion of the grant will be used to assist three local schools in further developing and implementing worm composting projects.  These projects feature worm composting bins located outside the school cafeteria.  Each day students and faculty separate their compostable food waste and recyclables from their cafeteria waste.  The food waste is weighed and fed to the worms.  The resulting compost can then be used in the school’s garden and greenhouse as a beneficial additive to the soil. 

The final focus of the grant funding will be on public education.  The authority has planned a significant program, using radio, newspaper, and cable television, to educate the public on the change from separated collection to single stream collection, as well as the overall benefits of recycling and how to use the drop off recycling sites.

“This grant will help Jefferson County as we develop our next 10-year municipal solid waste management plan and help improve the efficiency of the countywide drop-off recycling program,” authority Executive Director Donna Cooper commented.   “We thank Representative Smith and his staff for their support.  Without this interest in our recycling program, this grant may not have been possible.”

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