Olentangy Valley News

Unused recycling bins find homes inside schools

Township donates 1,000 bins purchased with grant cash

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Olentangy Local School District students just got a thousand new reasons to recycle from Liberty Township.

The township recently donated 1,000 recycling bins originally meant for use by township residents to the school district.

Township Administrator Dave Anderson said he was chatting with district officials about a grant-proposal project when they mentioned they could use recycling bins for classrooms in the district.

"I said, 'I can probably get you everything you need,' " he said.

Unbeknownst to the school district, the township had a surplus of recycling bins thanks to a grant it received in 2011 from the Delaware, Knox, Marion and Morrow Solid Waste District. The township purchased more than 2,000 18-gallon bins with the $15,000 grant, meant to help it implement curbside, commingled recycling in the township.

Anderson said the district encouraged the township's curbside recycling efforts in part because their recycling drop-off sites were some of the busiest and costliest for the district to service in the region.

At the same time, the township was finalizing a contract with Rumpke for curbside recycling services. As a result, Anderson said, many of the township's residents requested and received new recycling bins from Rumpke.

As a result, the township was left holding on to more than 1,000 surplus bins.

While Liberty Township had a tough time trying to get rid of all its recycling bins, Olentangy schools is having no such trouble.

District spokesman Devon Immelt said the administration sent out an email blast to staff when the bins arrived a few weeks ago. He said 892 of the 1,000 already have been requested by Olentangy teachers throughout the district for use in the classroom.

Anderson, who has children in the district, said that's not surprising.

"The schools have a ton of paper and other recyclables coming through those buildings," he said.

Anderson said officials at the DKMM Solid Waste District confirmed donating the bins to the schools was an acceptable use of the grant funding. He said he looks forward to more partnerships between the school district and the township in the future.

"This is just fairly typical of the collaborative nature of (our relationship)," he said.

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