[GRRN] BFI Discontinues Curbside

Cindy Shea (cpshea@earthlink.net)
Wed, 06 Oct 1999 10:47:41 -0400

Dear Friends,

Effective this week, BFI discontinued the curbside recycling service it
had been providing free of charge in our area. It claimed lower than
expected participation rates and a decline in revenues as the reasons.
The program was already in operation when we moved here 2.5 years ago.
In this unincorporated area of Pinellas County -- on the west side of
Tampa Bay -- homeowners contract directly with haulers for service. The
county -- the most densely populated in the state -- does not control
franchise agreements and there is no conditionality to offer recycling.
Many of the 24 incorporated municipalities offer the service, but a
large share of residents live outside those boundaries. Drop off
facilities are widely scattered and the closest one doesn't even take
aluminum, steel, or colored glass. Apparently there were vandalism
problems when aluminum was accepted so I've convinced the local grade
school to take on collection as a fundraiser. They already have a
newspaper bin c/o Southeast Paper.

My questions are:
1. For those familiar with regional markets, have prices recently
2. What's the best path to getting a curbside program reinstituted? I'm
guessing it's working with the county commission to set up franchise
agreements and make contracts conditional upon offering recycling. The
county is already talking about harmonizing service. At present it
varies greatly throughout the region -- and in our neighborhood I see
five collection trucks and formerly one recycling truck a week. BFI
offers two day and one day a week service -- different days -- and Waste
Management collects the other two days. Crazy.

Please provide any insights, guidance or advice you may be able to
offer. It would be wise to strike while the issue is hot. Thank you.

Cindy Pollock Shea
Contributing Editor
Florida Sustainable Communities Center