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County reviews landfill contract

No clear consensus reached for recycling

Staff writer

A contract has finally been received by Marion County regarding landfill fees at a closer site.

Transfer station manager Rollin Schmidt presented information Monday to Marion County Commission from Saline Municipal Landfill near Salina. The landfill personnel had asked Marion County, and other interested counties, to present fees they were willing to pay. Saline County Commission then decided to set its fees.

For a one-year contract, the price per ton would be $30. For a two- to four-year contract, the price would be $29.50 per ton. A fee of $29 per ton would be imposed for a five-year contract. The contracts were based on 5,000-9,999 tons per year.

There were 7,937 tons collected at the Marion County Transfer Station in 2007, and so far this year, there have been 6,136 tons collected.

Schmidt said Robinson Trucking of Florence was willing to haul loads of refuse to Salina at a cost of $75 per hour, which appeared to be about the same cost as what the county is paying now.

It was estimated that it would take about three hours per trip from Marion to the Salina landfill.

The commission has to make a decision in the coming weeks because Hamm Quarry/Rolling Meadows Landfill near Topeka requires a 90-day notification prior to the renewal or termination of the contract. The contract comes due Jan. 1, 2009.

If the commission does not notify the quarry of any changes, the same contract will automatically be renewed in January.

Commissioner Dan Holub asked if there could be a bin at the transfer station for plastics. When the bin is filled, the recyclables could be hauled or picked up.

Commissioner Randy Dallke asked about those cities who currently are doing their own recycling. Stutzman Refuse provides curbside recycling at Peabody and Hillsboro has collection bins with recyclables hauled to McPherson.

Schmidt noted that Carlsons’ Grocery of Marion has joined other grocers in the county in baling and selling cardboard.

Further discussion revealed that cardboard cannot be pulled from the tipping floor after commercial refuse trucks have dumped because it is not allowed. Schmidt said the cardboard would have to be sorted prior to being dumped.

“I don’t think Goessel or Peabody (or other communities) is going to bring recyclables to Marion,” Dallke said. “Part of the county is going to be left out because of the location of the facility (being in Marion).”

Holub suggested trailers be taken to the other communities for recyclables.

“It still will take manpower, equipment, and fuel to do this,” Dallke said. “I’m not sure if we’ll save that much in doing that.”

Holub said he continues to be concerned about the amount of trash being hauled to Topeka and the mounting charges. At some point the county will be forced to recycle, Holub said, with state statute requiring each entity to take less to landfills.

Earlier in the year, the county had paid $30 per ton to haul and dump trash at the Topeka landfill. In August the county was paying $42.42 per ton.

Schmidt said one way for the county to control costs is for the county to haul the refuse to a landfill.

More information will be gathered and presented at the next meeting.

Last modified Sept. 17, 2008

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