Published DateTo the editor,
The Tilton Recycle Committee was set up by the Selectmen four years ago because they wanted to find a way to reduce the escalating cost of solid waste disposal in the town. We were tasked with finding a way to promote recycling so as to take it out of the solid waste stream and thus reduce the cost to the town. Many people think that garbage pick-up is free and we really don't pay for it but that is not true. Excluding department salaries, solid waste disposal is the largest line item in the town budget.
The recycle committee has worked for four years to come up with a plan to present to the selectmen. We have done our homework and come up with what we think is the best plan for the town. There will be many people unhappy with the plan because it shifts the burden of paying for solid waste to the individual who creates the waste rather than the town sharing the burden among the tax payers. If warrant article 10 is approved at Town Meeting we will institute a Pay as You Throw (PAYT) system of disposing of your solid waste. Along with this will be a bi-weekly single stream recycle pick up. Citizens of the town will have to pay for town approved bags to dispose of their solid waste (garbage). The recycle material will go in a town issued recycle can. The more you recycle the less you will have to pay to get rid of your garbage. You will pay for what you put out and not for the cost of disposing of your neighbor's excessive garbage because he may not be recycling. The revenue from the sale of the bags will be put into a special fund and this will offset the cost of curbside recycling and go towards the cost of disposing of solid waste.
The cost per ton of disposing of solid waste is supposed to rise considerably this coming year and by taking many tons out of the solid waste stream through recycling it will reduce this cost substantially. By next year we will be able to tell you exactly how many tons we were able to eliminate from the solid waste disposal. We expect it to be at least 30 percent but 50 percent is possible if people really embrace it. By reducing the amount of solid waste we will be reducing the amount of tax dollars needed to dispose of that waste. We will not be paying per ton for the recycle waste. We will be educating citizens as to exactly what can be recycled. Although this is being done as a financial decision it is also an environmental one which is important to the future of our planet. Raw materials are not an unlimited supply and we cannot continue to use up all our natural resources as well as pollute our earth to dispose of all our created waste. We will be making a presentation at Town meeting to better explain our plan. We hope everyone will support this important decision.
To help with our theme of Reduce, Reuse and Recycle, we will also be again sponsoring the Tilton Town Wide Yard Sale day on Saturday April 27. You can sign up to be a part of the day at the Town Meeting or at the Town Hall after March 16th. This has been a very successful day in the past and we're sure it will be even larger this year.
We also have compost bins for sale at cost at the Public Works. All these things are the SMART (Save Money and Reduce Trash) things to do!
Marjorie Bonneville, Chairman
Tilton Recycle Committee