By Sandra Rulewich, Chair, Vernon Solid Waste Committee
Since the new state mandate to recycle residential food scraps took effect on July 1st, there’s been an increase in the volume of organic materials brought to the two dumpsters at the town highway garage. Before being emptied each week, the bins are more than full. The hot weather speeds up spoilage of food scraps. It really stinks. The flies move in, working to ensure the survival of their species, adding to the disgust of residents trying to do the right thing for the town, the state, and the planet. Thanks to David Walker, highway foreman, an odor control agent is now being added to the dumpsters each day, and it appears to help.
So far, you might not know that your Solid Waste Committee has been hard at work to improve the situation, but we have. We’ve made requests and recommendations. We’ve been monitoring the local opinion forums, so we’re aware of the complaints. And we’re still working with the Vernon Selectboard exploring more options to make the program meet the needs of the residents who have supported this program for many years now, and for the newer users who are joining the effort.
When problems arise, the Solid Waste Committee’s role is to inform and advise the Selectboard on matters of solid waste recycling and disposal. We gather information and try to make appropriate recommendations aimed at solving problems, always taking costs into consideration. In this particular situation there have been glitches and honest mistakes, some of which have been slow to reveal themselves, thus slowing down the whole process. It may take a bit longer, but we are still on the case, determined to make this work for you.
One thing you can do right now to save space in the bins for more stinky stuff is to PLEASE PUT ALL CLEAN CORRUGATED CARDBOARD OUT ON THE CURB WITH YOUR RECYCLING. There’s been a lot of it in the bins lately.
NEVER put any of these materials in the dumpsters:
- NO PLASTICS (Bags can go in the tall square black bin beside the dumpsters)
- NO GLASS
- NO METAL
- NO CERAMICS
Plastics, glass, metals, and ceramics are not compostable and must be kept separate from the organic materials that do go into making compost.
We thank you all for your participation in this program.