Cleveland should try small-scale recycling while it fixes its program’s big problems, council members argue

Cleveland should try small-scale recycling while it fixes its program’s big problems, council members argue

CLEVELAND, Ohio – Some City Council members argued Tuesday that Cleveland shouldn’t wait as long as a year to restart a comprehensive recycling program as proposed by the administration of Mayor Frank Jackson. They used a council committee hearing to ask Darnell Brown, Jackson’s chief of operations, to at least resume some small-scale recycling that might focus on profitable materials such as paper and cardboard. “Let’s have that be it, so we do not lose a whole year,” Council President Kevin Kelley said. “Do something smart. Do something to keep the confidence of the citizens.” Cleveland’s recycling program went idle in April when the city’s contract with a recycling vendor expired. Cleveland had twice sought bids on a new vendor, but only got one offer that would have driven up recycling costs about $6 million a year. Some council members were miffed that the administration did not notify them that the program had lapsed, noting that their constituents have a high interest in continuing to recycle. On Tuesday, Brown told council’s Development, Planning and Sustainability Committee that the city has hired a consultant to review its entire trash operation, including recycling before deciding what to do next. Restarting the recycling program could take eight months to a year, Brown said. For some members of council, that’s too long to not be doing something. Kelley proposed the administration send messages asking residents to use their blue recycling bins only for clean paper and cardboard, material that recyclers are still willing ...
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