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Kearns and Sons

True cost of Stevensville town recycling plan

By Doug Soehren, Vice President, Ravalli County Recycling, Inc.

Thanks to Mayor Mim Mack and the Town Council for their historic vote to support community recycling in Stevensville. In so doing they have joined thousands of municipal governments all across the country and around the world who recognize recycling as one of the essential elements of environmentally friendly waste management.
RCR partnered with RSVP (Retired & Senior Volunteer Program) and the Ravalli County Fair Board and formed the non-profit corporation in 2010. The next year we partnered with Recycling in the ‘Root and added, as clients, the Ravalli County government, the US Forest Service and the Job Corps. The City of Hamilton joined two weeks ago.
Over 120 private sector participants also pay for curbside pickups and perhaps a thousand or more folks bring their recyclables on free drop off days to the center. Forty-four tons of combined recyclables per month was our average for the second quarter of this year.
The same quarter, our net profit was less than $300 – after payroll, gas, rent and other expenses – so you can possibly understand why so many friends and neighbors have stepped forward with donations and volunteer at the center on Mondays and Saturdays.
Letter-writer Clayton D. Floyd Jr. last week expressed reservations about the cost of RCR services to the Town of Stevensville. We would like to assure him and the rest of your readers that residents and those that decide to join our community and invest here will be paying very little per capita to support recycling.
These are the options we proposed:
The cost of the repurposed 40-foot shipping container is $4200 including delivery. Modifications will cost approximately $570 not including painting (that’s where a project by high school students comes in) for a total of $4770.
Option A
The Town of Stevensville buys the container up front including modification costs. We service it every week for $18 plus $7 per cubic yard after the first one. We supply the super sacks and carts that go inside, exchanging empties for full containers.
Option B
RCR buys the container (assuming we can line up financing) and charges $100 per month rent in addition to the service fees in Option A.
As you can see the cost is based on the actual amount of material processed. The decision to accept Option A or Option B has not been made. We plan to meet with Mayor Mim Mack this week to discuss it.

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