News

What comes around goes around, even for pizza boxes

By ERICA HALL

The Mirror

The City Council has authorized the solid-waste division of the city’s Public Works Department to apply for $246,000 in 2006 and 2007 grant funding for hazardous waste and solid-waste reduction and commercial and residential recycling programs.

Next year, the solid waste division intends to add to its existing recycling services by:

• Expanding the yard waste program to include materials like pizza boxes.

• Expanding Christmas tree pick-up and recycling to apartments.

• Promoting curbside recycling program where recyclables are combined in one collection bin rather than sorted into several.

The Coordinated Prevention Grant of $66,150 has a 25 percent match requirement, which officials said could be met with waste reduction/recycling and hazardous waste management grants of $134,278 and $46,100, respectively, neither of which requires a match.

Rob Van Orsow, the city’s solid-waste management director, said the grants are non-competitive, and as long as the city does the necessary paperwork, the money is almost guaranteed. He said he already completed and submitted the Coordinated Prevention Grant, which was approved, and the other grants are due soon.

Solid-waste programs include recycling citywide, yard waste and composting services, hazardous-waste collection spots around town and Christmas tree collection for single-family homes.

Van Orsow said he’d like more residents to participate in the Northwest Natural Yard Days program, which is geared toward educating residents about yard and lawncare methods that are environmentally friendly and help cut down on yard waste and debris. Three local garden stores –– Lowe’s Home Improvement, Home Depot and the Oriental Garden Center –– participate in the program, he said.

Van Orsow added residents also can get discounts on compost bins because of the city’s participation in a county consortium. Federal Way residents can receive a double discount because King County offers a discount that the city piggybacks with its own additional grant-funded subsidy. More information is available on-line at www.composters.com/kingcounty.

Staff writer Erica Hall: 925-5565, ehall@fedwaymirror.com

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