Fort Smith Department Of Sanitation Proposes New Goals, Recycling Big Concern

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FORT SMITH (KFSM) — At a Board of Directors study session on Tuesday (Aug. 28), the Fort Smith Department of Sanitation proposed its objectives for the upcoming year.

The department put forth five objectives, three which involved improving recycling.

  • Begin an education and outreach program to teach the importance of recycling.
  • Increase the customer base/market share of the industrial/Commercial collections divisions.
  • Initiate citywide recycling ordinance for city facilities.
  • Evaluate Dial-a-truck and cart delivery and maintenance.
  • Free recycling drop off at the landfill.

Improving recycling within the city has become a big concern following a scandal that showed the city the city dumped nearly 90 percent of collected recyclable materials into the landfill from October 2014 to June 2016. The city didn’t notify residents and continued running recycling trucks, which cost nearly $53,000 a month, according to a lawsuit filed against the city.

First, the department looks to develop a partnership program with local schools to teach students how recycling works and why it’s important. They say the thought is that the students would then take the information home and apply it at home. The department says they need to start attending various HOA meetings, church meetings, etc. to talk about the state of recycling in the city.

The department would also like to initiate a citywide recycling ordinance for city facilities. Their plan includes providing a recycling service to all city facilities and departments and putting recycling bins and dumpsters in parts of the city with easy access for residents.

Another goal is to offer free recycling drop off at the city’s landfill. The goal is to help residents living in multi-family complexes have access to recycling. Staff at the landfill would scan the load to make sure it was all expected materials in the recycling stream. Once full, recyclables would be hauled to Third Rock Recycling.

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