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Brick Residents Recycling Less, Could Cost Town More

Move to automated pickup coming soon

Recycling may be easier than ever before, but fewer Brick residents are doing so in recent months.

Though it's only a small drop – 36 percent of Brick residents recycled this quarter compared to 38 percent last – any drop comes with both surprise and financial concern.

Items eligible for recycling that are thrown in the garbage instead help Brick's tipping fees – the price paid for waste disposal – rise.

"We've seen a little dip in our recycling," said Business Administrator Scott Pezarras. "I don't understand why that is, because now that you're able to throw everything into one can, I would've expected recycling to go up."

Brick, like other Ocean County municipalities, now accepts so-called single-stream recycling, where all recyclable items can be thrown into the same receptacle. That means no more tying up newspapers and cardboard, or separating plastic, metal and glass items.

The township is expected to solicit bids soon for its conversion to automated recycling. The township is expected to use money from its capital budget to purchase automated trucks as well as a 95-gallon can for each household.

The cans, Pezarras said, will likely be purchased through a national cooperative now that state law allows municipalities to team up on purchases with national partners.

For now, township officials continue to identify areas where participation is low, and send out literature explaining how recycling helps the environment, as well as Brick's coffers. An uptick of 10 percent in participation will mean a savings between $210,000 to $220,000 for the township, Pezarras said.

"You'll never get 100 percent compliance, but even if we could get 70, that will be about $800,000," said Pezarras.

Identifying neighborhoods with low participation will get easier once the automated recycling program is in place, Pezarras said. Modern automated recycling cans come with tiny chips located inside that are tracked when the truck dumps its contents.

"Hopefully we'll see improvement in the percentages in our recycling," said Pezarras.

Joseph Woolston Brick August 29, 2012 at 08:00 PM
Chips are not that smart yet and would cost a fortune to produce one that would measure the volume in a canister. People have no clue what types of information is being collected today and sold. For example, how many of you have those Pathmark or Shoprite discount cards? The ones you scan to get the discount offered? Raise hands please. OK for the ladies that raised your hands, someone in Pathmark or Shoprite knows your menstrual cycle! For the men, people in the same markets know you bought Cruex and you have Jock Itch, cool huh! For those of you that are using those cards to get the discounts you are giving away scads of information that is then sold to interested parties. ( Did you ever get coupons in the mail for Tampax just before the curse and thought, wow what a coincidence! Nope it wasn't). Some of you may be thinking I should get a tinfoil hat and put it on, except I used to be one of those people that collected data, analyzed and dispersed the information to those who paid for it. Well how could the RFID chip in the garbage can hurt me you ask. First it will take a couple of years of data collection for this scenario to happen. You are an avid recycler, you put your cans out faithfully every week except the last week of July and the first week of August every year, that means someone in the township knows your on vacation and the house unprotected for two weeks. Not saying a worker for the township would do this but remember a certain trusted mayor?
some d. one August 29, 2012 at 08:40 PM
Your making me cry. Please stop and really think about what your saying. You must have nothing to do in your life. LIBERAL! Sorry it slipped out. With all the problems this town, state, country have you want to impose more regulation. If people want to recycle, wonderful, my hats off to them. For those who don't , so what. Stop crying yourself to sleep at night. Look at the real issues, your being blinded by BS. Ban together to create more jobs. Welfare, if your fit to work get off your ass or you get NOTHING. Recycling, you people make me sick.
Bertha August 29, 2012 at 09:11 PM
I do recycle and I agree with recycling, but i would like to know the costs of these chips in our trash pails. Who makes these decisions, are people going to be fined if they do not recycle. I doubt it, the first time someone calls Town Hall to complain or say thier not voting for a politican that endorsed the fine system the fines will be lifted. Also the biggest violaters for not recycling is the Board of Education, Government Offices and Business. Another case of do what I say not what I do.
Allanopolis August 30, 2012 at 06:19 AM
There is a recycling center in Lakewood by the Blueclaws Stadium. Tell a friend.
Sal Petoia August 30, 2012 at 02:53 PM
JWB: The chips would not measure the volume, but the weight. The trucks already have ways to determine if a can is too heavy, so no reason that info can't be integrated to determine the weight of recycling material being lifted. The tax bills are already computerized, so it shouldn't be too difficult to give every participating resident a tax break. In my engineering career I never liked it when somebody would say "it can't be done". The challenge is how can we make it work! I do agree with you on your assessment of the danger all the data can provide. Maybe I need a tin hat too!


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