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Support Frei, county on solid waste efforts

Letter to the Editor

Thank you, Mark Frei, for tackling the difficult task of addressing changes mandated in solid waste collection for rural Idaho County. The facts that open dumpsters are not allowed throughout Idaho (and the nation) and the need to be proactive in addressing this issue resulted in the directive to consolidate sites included in the last two solid waste contracts. In both the Clearwater Valley and Salmon River, successful, fenced in sites are in place. The Elk City area plans are currently in progress. The Camas Prairie is next and options are being explored.

Mark, working with Simmons Sanitation, is looking for ways to address concerns of patrons in the inequity of charges to landowners and ways for users to pay for what they produced. Another issue is controlling what goes into dumpsters. They are also looking for ways to stabilize costs created by steadily increasing amounts of garbage produced.

What is proposed? Mega fenced-in dumpster sites open 24/7 for household garbage. At the same location a separate fenced-in area will be manned and open three or four days a week (hopefully more often in the future). The manned area will include containers for yard waste, appliances and furniture, places for hazardous materials (chemicals, batteries etc.) and tires. It is also proposed to include recycling, which would increase opportunities and convenience for patrons. Why is this important? Recycling decreases the amount that has to be hauled and dumped as garbage which helps stabilize costs. Currently the average amount diverted per month in Idaho County is 70,000 pounds.

As chairman of Idaho County Recycling, I have been closely following what is happening for the past seven years. I encourage you to support Mark Frei and the commissioners in their efforts to locate convenient sites in both the Cottonwood and Grangeville areas. Also, check the facts and have an open mind before voicing opinions. And, recycle to help reduce garbage costs.

Janie Fluharty



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