refined elements of an extensive report prepared by the Delaware
Solid Waste Authority under an agreement with the council and
the Department of Natural Resources & Environmental Control, the
gubernatorial panel will take the lead in conducting at least
three, and possibly, five public workshops in October, according
to Paul Wilkinson, its chairman.
to make it clear that these are not [waste authority]
workshops," he said. The proposal to be presented for reaction
and comment will reflect the thinking of a group which reflects
a cross-section of interests, he explained, adding, "We
represent the public."
expected that the meetings will take place in October at central
locations in each of the three counties and probably also in the
cities of Wilmington and Rehoboth Beach. Specific dates and
venues have not yet been determined.
those sessions, the council will reconvene to produce a final
report for the governor and General Assembly as well as a draft
of legislation to implement the program. At present, the
thinking is that it will be enacted during the coming session of
the Assembly and phased in over three years, beginning with New
outlined in a memorandum prepared by Michael Parkowski, lawyer
for the waste authority, and presented at a meeting of the
council on Sept. 8, key elements of the program would look
something like this:
Households statewide would be required to separate designated
recyclables from other trash. All the recyclables would go into
the same container and would be collected from where trash is
now picked up. Common terminology refers to that as 'curbside'
collection although most unincorporated communities do not have
be 'illegal' to include recyclables with garbage and general
trash. The expectation is that compliance will be largely
voluntary as the result of an education program. Trash haulers
would not collect unseparated trash and there would be fines for
flagrant and repeat violators.
Collections would be made by most if not all of the present
private and municipal haulers, which would determine schedules
and rates. It is expected that, in most cases, the same firm
would pick up both general trash and recyclables with a single
combined fee covering both services. The waste authority would
collect from any area where hauling service is not available.
Masterson, of Waste Management of Delaware, told the council
that cost of the additional collection to a private hauling firm
would average about $5 in New Castle County, $5.75 in Kent and
$6.50 in Sussex. That assumes collection of recyclables every
two weeks. Costs would be less, he said, in communities which
contract with a single hauler.
Multi-unit residential properties, such as apartment or
condominium buildings, which provide central depositories for
trash would have to do so on a separated basis. Anyone who does
not employ a trash hauler would be required to take general
trash and recyclables in separate containers to whatever
drop-off location they use.
Canzano, the waste authority's chief operating officer, said its
'igloo' program for collecting recyclables "will probably go
away" although elements such as collection of oil and discarded
electronic products is likely to continue.
waste authority would operate a processing facility which would
prepare the recyclables for resale -- the idea being that the
purpose of recycling is to reuse rather than dispose of
material. Haulers and individuals would be able to deliver
recyclable material to the processing facility without having to
pay what is known in the business as a tipping fee.
would be no requirement that the waste authority's facility be
used or that the recyclables remain in Delaware. There are
private firms, including some large trash haulers, which operate
recycling facilities as part of their business.
addition to presumably higher fees for private trash collection,
the program would be financed by state grants and a collection
fee charged on a per-ton basis to every firm and individual
licensed by the state to haul solid waste. Those include more
than just trash haulers. That money would go to subsidize the
waste authority's processing facility if resale of material did
not cover its cost. The grants provided by the legislature would
be for capital costs, such as acquiring additional trucks,
associated with municipalities starting the program.
council was unable at its meeting to agree on an approach to
handling so-called yard waste, which accounts for a significant
portion of recyclable material now going into landfills. It has
agreed that such things as grass-clippings and leaves should be
banned from the landfills.
ecologically conscious people advocate such things as mulching
and composting those materials, there is a recognized learning
curve associated with spreading that message to the general
that there are a relatively large number of landscaping and tree
cutting firms which would likely handle such material for a fee,
Wilkinson said that "once you tell people they will have to pay
for [that service], they'll find other things to do with [the
material]." But Pat Todd, of the League of Women Voters,
argued that it would be politically unpalatable to simply ban
the material from landfills "until you can say where it will
been some talk of attracting a commercial composting firm to the
area, but the relatively small volume of yard waste generated in
the state -- estimated at about 45,000 tons a year -- probably
would not make such an operation economically attractive.