City attorney Dale Johnson has spent the last two months working with Pratt representatives to obtain a reasonable contract for the purchase of recyclables. The issue was tabled twice while an agreement could be reached. Following modifications to a termination clause, the Council approved the recycling pact.
When the city received notice from Bryant’s Recycling of their intent to close last year, it contacted Waste Industries to supply a 40 cubic yard roll-off container to collect recyclables, which is filled to the brim and hauled to Pratt. The city began talks with Pratt representatives months back regarding possible reimbursement for those recycled items.
“They had been taking recycling the last several months, but without an agreement they would not be able to reimburse the city the market rate (for recyclables),” noted city manager John Connet.
The agreements, approved Tuesday, state in essence that the city will be paid $30 per ton for most recyclables, including mixed paper, corrugated containers, green glass, amber glass, clear glass, plastics No. 1 through 7, aluminum cans and steel cans.
Cardboard revenue will be based on 60 percent of the market rate.
According to the documents, the purchase price for each ton of corrugated waste material supplied will be 60 percent of OBM (Official Board Markets), also called “Yellow Sheet,” the industry standard for linerboard and multiple grades of recovered paper. The Pratt agreement states that is “the high side of the price range for the Southeast region.” If the OBM publication changes pricing policy, or ceases to publish, an alternate price shall be established between the city and Pratt.
City public works director Chris Doherty said the city has previously received money from the sale of cardboard, but from nothing else.
The proposed agreements with Pratt are for a period of six years, which can be automatically renewed on a year-to-year basis once that time expires. The city can terminate the agreement with Pratt Industries with six months’ notice.
Doherty said there has been an increase in recycling and attributes that to both state mandates and green initiatives. Adding plastic to a list of items banned from landfills contributed to a rise, and more bans — of computers, televisions and other electronics — are expected in January 2011.
Doherty has estimated the weekly cost to service the city’s convenience sites at around $1,400. While there were several options floated by city officials in recent months that included different methods of curbside collection, the city decided to keep the convenience sites — but make them larger.
The city has used a 40 cubic yard roll-off container to collect recyclables that are dropped off in individual Igloo containers at each of the sites. Once the roll-off container is filled, it is hauled to Pratt Industries. City officials said about 60 manhours a week have been needed to collect recycling at the sites.
Under a previous proposal by Doherty, the Igloo containers would be replaced by 30 cubic yard roll-off containers at each of the sites. The city would rent those containers at a cost of $100 a month, and a pull charge of $185. However, no new containers are in place as of yet, Connet said this week.
“Not yet,” the city manager said. “We’re in the process of moving toward a different type of container; we’re changing it where there’s going to be a larger container that will make the recycling at convenience sites more efficient.”
The agreement with Pratt will help toward that efficiency, cutting down on the manhours used at the site while getting a little money back.
“All we’re trying to do is have to touch it as little as possible, and they will pay us market rate for materials,” said Connet.
He said reimbursement for the recycled items will work to offset the cost of the recycling process itself.
“It’s not a lot of money,” the city manager remarked, “but it’s some money. We’re just looking for any (funds) to offset that recycling. We don’t have any goals at this time, we’re just looking to offset that service.”
Chris Berendt can be reached at 910-592-8137, ext. 121, or by email at firstname.lastname@example.org.