Area residents are taking advantage of recycling and disposal options made available by the Henry County Solid Waste Management District.

District director/educator JoAnne McCorkle told her board of directors this week that the contractor who collects household hazardous waste dropped off at the district office recently picked up “a considerable amount” of fluorescent, CFL and neon light bulbs, oil based paints, a large number of batteries, mercury obtained from an old switch and a container of “sharps.”

She also said the contractor that picks up e-scrap – things like computer monitors, televisions, printers, etc. – stopped by the district office and filled a semi-trailer and a box truck.

“They weren’t able to get it all,” McCorkle said. “They had to leave approximately 35 televisions and assorted other items that they couldn’t take because they were so full.”

McCorkle indicated she was pleased so many Henry County residents are doing their part to minimize the amount of materials destined for the landfill.

“I think most people are very conscious of the fact that the electronic scrap in particular can’t go to the landfill and they want to do the right thing and recycle,” she said. “We are so thrilled people are participating. People can drop off almost 50 different types of electronics and there’s only one that has a fee and that’s televisions. We’ll take any size television for just $5 each.”

McCorkle also reported the contractor will no longer accept microwaves, but noted Neal’s Scrap Metal on I Avenue not only accepts them, but pays for their scrap value.

New Castle Mayor Greg York, who serves on the HCSWMD board, suggested the district office continue to accept microwaves and take them to Neal’s when enough have accumulated to make the trip worthwhile. It was agreed the office will continue to accept them from those Henry County residents who don’t want to bother with taking them to the scrap yard.

In other news, McCorkle reported abuses at Henry County’s recycling sites appear to be on the decrease.

“Things have been much better since we started working on that and talking to the different town councils,” she said. “Several of the town councils are taking responsibility for their sites. They want to keep them, so they’re doing what it takes to keep them.”

In recent weeks, the district attorney has been sending letters to people who have been connected to illegal dumping at recycling sites, warning them that such practices will no longer be tolerated and are subject to prosecution.

Also, McCorkle said some of the sites will be getting new signage that makes it clear the dumpsters are for recyclable materials only and providing examples of what can and what should not be placed in them.

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