Recycling services in Stevens Point will cost the municipality $55K in 2022

Published: Oct. 4, 2021 at 8:15 PM CDT
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STEVENS POINT, Wis. (WSAW) - For the first time, Portage County Solid Waste Department decided to charge a per capita recycling fee. Municipalities will be out thousands of dollars in 2022 to make up for recycling costs.

“2022 we’re expecting a budgetary impact of about $55,000 and that’s related to a new per capita fee that the county is instituting for municipalities that participate in their recycling program,” said Corey Ladick, Comptroller and Treasurer City of Stevens Point.

That’s a big hit considering they lost $45 thousand dollars last year in recycling too.

Luckily, Ladick said it won’t affect taxes for people in Stevens Point. The city plans to take the costs out of the 2022 operating budget. But, that means they’ll have to cut back on other things.

“It does take away from other priorities that are important to the community. It makes it more difficult to do other things such as increasing staffing levels in the police and fire department,” said Ladick.

Some cities when faced with high recycling costs have closed down altogether. But adding the recycling to the landfill would cost even more, not to mention how bad it would be for the environment.

Stevens Point alone pays $300 thousand dollars a year for landfill usage already. The county said investments in their program will bring changes.

“Because there is a new company coming in there is an upfront initial investment in that initial company. There’ll be new sorting equipment and all of that but it’s expensive,” said Amanda Haffele, Solid Waste Director for Portage County.

The county won’t be passing on the state recycling grant to municipalities this year like they usually do. They’ll be using the money for new equipment.

For the next two years recycling will be transported to Whitewater while the facility is upgraded. Then, Haffele said the recycling will be sorted on-site, ultimately making it cheaper for municipalities once again.

For information on how to recycle your specific items click here.

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