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City of Copperas Cove addresses future of single stream recycling program

Posted at 6:48 PM, Nov 20, 2019
and last updated 2019-11-20 23:56:02-05

COPPERAS COVE, TX — Recycling collection and disposal costs the City of Copperas Cove more than $2 million each year.

Patricia Hallenbeck and her son Lucas have recycled for years, something the City of Copperas Cove helped them with.

From 1999 to 2013, the city utilized the curbside sorting recycling program, which featured the use of little blue bins and required citizens to sort their materials.

"Much more work to have to split everything down into different bins and drive around looking for a place to drop them off," explained Patricia.

However, the program changed in 2013 with the implementation of single stream recycling, which allows recycled material to be mixed in a collection truck, instead of being sorted.

"When we first got these [green] cans, everybody uses them," said Lucas.

At a recent city council meeting, public works director Scott Osborn announced the more than $2 million program could undergo some changes during the next fiscal year.

One proposal is a partnership with the Fort Hood Material Recovery Facility, a decision that would need Congressional approval.

"The act is currently in a conference committee to work out the differences in the bills between the House and Senate," explained Osborn at the meeting.

Another option is introducing a monthly fee per recycling account.

"Pay a two or three dollar fee to keep doing the single stream recycling... I don't know how high I would be wiling to go," said Patricia.

"The City sunk a lot of money into it already, so you know try and make it work a little longer, unless the costs become to high and it just doesn't work out anymore," added Lucas.

City officials shared they do not recommend adding a user fee to the recycling program at this point. It was merely named as one of the four options addressed at Tuesday night's meeting.

Staff has recommended, and City Council has agreed, to stand by for a couple more months to see what develops in regards to recycling.