Town Of Newtown On Board With Recycling Efforts
To the Editor:
This is in response to a letter that appeared in the The Newtown Bee online at newtownbee.com on September 9 entitled “Proper Recycling Is No Laughing Matter.”
Due to an intemperate remark alleged from a worker at the transfer station, a resident was upset that the whole issue of recycling was not being taken seriously by the Town of Newtown. Fortunately, nothing could be farther from the truth. The town was one of the first to commit to mandatory curbside recycling almost 30 years ago. More recently, they have initiated the most robust food scrap recycling effort in the state, with nearly 800 residences participating.
“Single stream” recycling, where all the items are collected together, has been a challenge because it relies on all our citizens doing the right thing. In combining all these items, the town currently is only following the process mandated by the State of Connecticut. However, this process can lead to contaminated loads, most notably by broken glass, and then these loads can be rejected as recyclables.
The Housatonic Resource Recovery Authority (HRRA), of which Newtown is a member, has begun a first-in-the-state pilot program to remove glass from the waste stream. This will go a long way toward making the single stream program more effective with less load contamination. It’s not easy to get movement on this because the state has not been supportive. The pilot program will be ending shortly, and then the Authority will decide how to move forward.
In the meantime, we ask all residents to comply with the State of Connecticut’s approved universal recycling list “What’s In, What’s Out,” included in recycling single stream either curbside or when they go to the transfer station. For additional information and guidance, residents can contact HRRA at hrra.org. We thank all the residents who have been very helpful and dedicated to preserving our natural resources. We will try to continue to be good partners with that effort.
Frederick W. Hurley, Jr
Newtown Public Works Director
4 Turkey Hill Road, Newtown September 11, 2019