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Friday, August 29, 2014
What goes in the bucket?
By Paul Shapiro
“There is nothing that is the center of conversation like recycling right now,” Hewlett Harbor Mayor Mark Weiss said. “You can’t go to a friend’s home, commute on the Long Island Rail Road or sit in a local restaurant without hearing people venting their frustration about the recycling program. The local hair salons, health clubs, nail and bagel shops are all abuzz over concerns about what it is the district wants us to do and how best to do it.”
Since the new state-mandated recycling program was implemented on Jan. 21, there has been much confusion among residents. “We’ve had complaints,” said Lawrence village Trustee Edward Klar, who serves as commissioner of sanitation under Mayor Simon Felder. “People wonder about the concept of having to recycle, given that the plant was doing that previously and that we had the best recycling rate in the state under the existing program. But given that the state has mandated that we have to recycle, our residents want to do the right thing. Unfortunately, much of the information received appears to be incomplete or contradictory as to what needs to be recycled.”
Weiss said he knows that the management and staff in District 1 want to do what’s best for the community, and that residents do not want to create more work than necessary for the collectors. He pointed out that the program needs better explanation, specific details and, in some cases, adjustments in scheduling. “The instructions were just not clear,” Weiss said. “Not a day has gone by since the program was announced that I don’t hear complaints about the lack of clarity on the part of residents regarding what items must be recycled, what should not be recycled, the proper packaging of the recyclables and the required cleanliness of the items put aside for recycling.”
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