Craig Recycling Center off to fast start

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Friday marked the one-week anniversary of the city of Craig recycling center and officials say the service is working well.

"Nobody's made a big mess yet, that was my worst fear," City Road and Bridge Department Director Randy Call said.

He said the Dumpsters are filling fast -- though not so fast that trucks are having to haul recyclables more often than the budget will handle.

The first load was taken Thursday to Waste Management in Steamboat Springs -- the company that has agreed to take the paper, plastic and cardboard the city collects. So far, Call said, the cardboard bin is the one that's filling the fastest.

There has been some contamination -- items placed in the bins that aren't allowed, but Call said that has been minor. Some people are leaving the lids on their plastic bottles and others have deposited glass, which is not accepted because there's no market for recycled glass.No one has used the bins to dump their trash, Call said.

He believes the $7,000 security system installed at the site is one of the reasons there have been few problems. The City Council has warned they will prosecute those who use the site for anything other than what it was intended for.

The city has invested nearly $40,000 in a recycling program, which opened July 1. It is the first of its kind in Moffat County, though neighboring Routt and Rio Blanco counties have offered recycling for several years. The idea was brought forth in August and was something Craig City Council members enthusiastically endorsed.

"We all say we want to be responsible to the concept of recycling, but you can't force people to recycle if they have nowhere to do it," former Craig Mayor Dave DeRose said when proposing the idea.

The site located north of Craig at 1775 Yampa Ave., accepts paper, cardboard and plastic. Used motor oil will eventually accepted once the receptacles the city's ordered to contain it arrive. Call believes that will happen next month.

The center is open all day every day. Acceptable items include: corrugated cardboard, newsprint, paper bags, wrapping paper, computer paper, magazines, catalogs, aluminum cans, clean tin cans with labels removed and no. 1 and 2 plastic (small neck bottles).

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