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Recycling Continues to Give Dividends to Towns Despite Weak Economy

While the amount of money received from the county's sale of recyclables has decreased, a reduction in tipping fees helps the bottom line

Though the price of recyclables has fallen in recent months, Ocean County towns continue to see positive results from the county's recycling program, Freeholder James H. Lacey said Wednesday.

Ocean County residents recycled nearly 36,000 tons of cardboard, paper, bottles and more between Jan. 1 and June 30, Lacey said during a pre-board meeting at the county administration building. That resulted in a savings of more than $2.5 million in tipping fees.

But Lacey sounded a slightly cautionary note, saying that while the county's recycling program paid out dividends totalling $486,606 for the January-June period -- the 35th dividend distribution to towns since the program began in 1995 -- the continuing weakness in the global economy has cut that dividend nearly in half.

The payout for the January-June period was $13.57 per ton, down from about $26 per ton a year ago, Lacey said. That reflects the drop in the value of the recyclables.

"The price of soda bottles has fallen $240 per ton," Lacey said, and the price of aluminum has fallen $200 per ton."

"We sell some of these commodities as far away as China," Lacey said, and the demand has fallen because the demand for products has fallen. "It's going in the wrong direction right now."

"Economic activity in the world is still down," Freeholder Director Gerry P. Little noted.

And for that reason, towns should not count on the recycling money to pay bills, Lacey said. "It's going to fluctuate."

But the freeholders said the program is still very important. The savings in tipping fees reduces the costs to towns, and the impact on the environment is reduced.

The dividends towns are receiving, based on amounts of recyclables contributed, are as follows:

Barnegat, $17,873; Barnegat Light, $1,334; Bay Head, $1,373; Beach Haven, $3,670; Beachwood, $6699; Berkeley, $23,631; Brick, $51, 142; Eagleswood, $1,398; Harvey Cedars, $891; Island Heights, $1,429; Jackson, $30,758, Lacey, $26,351; Lakehurst, $1,711; Lakewood, $74,821; Lavallette, $3,195; Little Egg Harbor, $18,191; Long Beach Twp., $7,314; Manchester, $20,069; Mantoloking, $524; Waretown, $5,946; Ocean Gate, $1,611; Pine Beach, $1,630; Plumsted, $3,578; Point Beach, $6,617; Point Borough, $21,931; Seaside Heights, $4,073; Seaside Park, $3,224; Ship Bottom, $2,919; South Toms River, $1,683; Stafford, $37,713; Surf City, $2,624; Toms River, $95, 246; Tuckerton, $4,886.

So Much to Say August 30, 2012 at 01:15 AM
Toms River, $95,246....Nice.....Did that offset my taxes or is it going into the general fund so the mayor and council can raid it for STUPID projects????
Lucilleacat August 30, 2012 at 11:36 AM
It would be nice if the shredding program was more than once a year. I did not see the schedule published so missed my chance this year.
HermNation August 30, 2012 at 02:17 PM
Not bad considering that only 36% of Brick Residents think it's important to recycle.
2much2say August 30, 2012 at 11:46 PM
I've got a question, I noticed smoke coming from my back yard & I know one of my neighbors has one of those fire pit things, but this isn't the neighbor. She was burning her paper & cardboard boxes, she says "Im trying to be green" I'm like huh? Isn't she polluting the air? And is this legal? And I must say the residents of BRICK that DONT recycle should be ashamed of themselves. Complete morons!
Bertha August 31, 2012 at 02:38 PM
Yes it is illegal to burn cardboard and/or paper in a backyard chimney or any where else (unless you are using a few pieces to start a fire) this is not from the fire commissioners but the state mandate to recycle and the township ordinance to recycle. And I agree with 2much2say to many residents of Brick don't recycle. Just look at the amount of money Toms River received compared to Brick ALMOST DOUBLE, and don't tell me it"s because they are a larger township thier population doesn"t double Bricks. It"s about time everybody did thier part and start recycling, stop the excuses!!

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