After a year of operating, Starkville’s free curbside recycling program will soon allow glass .
The Starkville Board of Aldermen approved an upcoming contract with Columbus-based BluBox effective next month.
Starkville Recycling, which had a contract with the city the first year, did not take glass, generating complaints from avid recyclers.
The long-awaited plus also comes with a commodity profit plus a 25 percent profit share rebate for the city, said Ward 3 Alderman Eric Parker, chair of the Recycling Committee.
Participants in the recycling program can continue using the green bags distributed by the city.
In efforts to cut long term costs, however, the Environmental Services Department could switch to using carts instead of bags for both recycling and sanitation services.
Parker presented a cost-benefit analysis estimating a savings of nearly $600,000 over a decade for 10,000 carts.
“That’s substantial,” said Ward 5 Alderman Jeremiah Dumas in support of the switchover.
Dumas also suggested that sanitation services begin picking up garbage and recyclables one day a week each.
Parker said that advantages of buying carts with a 10-year warranty, instead of bags each year, would extend beyond lowering costs such as workman’s compensation claims due to handling materials in bags, overtime adjustments to salary and lower insurance rates.
“This would be a cleaner more sanitary system,” Parker said, “and it would provide a neater appearance for the city.”
Residents would be delivered 96-gallon carts with a serial number than would be recorded in the Environmental Services Department’s billing system.
Staff from the department would be available to roll carts to curbs and back if needed.
Ward 6 Alderman Roy Á. Perkins opposed the idea, contending the city’s current system works just fine.
“Our bag deliver system goes back for decades,” Perkins said. “I am of the personal mindset that you don’t change what doesn’t have to be changed.”