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Council weighs new design to boost recycling bins’ stability

Estimated 5,740 homes in Sylvania could be affected


The Blade/Andy Morrison
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Recycling bins in Sylvania might change to large rolling carts expected to better hold contents during windy weather.

Officials discussed the offer from Republic Services, the city’s refuse and recycling contractor, at meetings Nov. 19, but have not made a decision. Kevin Aller, Sylvania’s director of public service, said a switch from 18-gallon bins to 96-gallon closed containers is possible. A few residents have complained, he said, about high winds lifting the bins’ lids and scattering the contents around the neighborhoods.

“We have had periods where we’ve had problems with the recyclables blowing around ... and making the neighborhoods a little untidy and making a mess in some situations,” he said.

The larger containers would streamline pickup, he said. “It’s much more efficient and it is gaining popularity every day. One of the things that I like in addition to the mess or containing the mess, is those recycling trucks are only hitting our streets every other week. If we can keep them off the streets an additional week, I think that's an added benefit.”

Republic Services has offered to make the conversion with an exception in the contract. A three-year extension will be added to the pact, set to renew in September. “Republic has offered to forgo the normal price increase that would take place in September, in exchange for the extended contract and reducing to every-other-week [collection],” Mr. Aller said.

Republic Services must buy the carts, distribute them, and provide educational materials to residents. The new containers would be used only for recycling.

An estimated 5,740 homes in Sylvania could be affected.

“ ... It is a continuing problem,” Mayor Craig Stough said. “Having covered containers could be a positive.”

But he wanted council members to know the containers’ size might be a negative. “I want council to think about the size of the containers. If you drive through Toledo, I see a lot of them sitting in front of people’s garages or outside.”

Other council members shared the concern. Referring to his own neighborhood, council member Todd Milner said his subdivision has rules against putting refuse and recycling containers outside and in plain sight. Council President Mary Westphal asked a Republic Services representative at the meeting what options exist.

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