What's Wrong With The City Recycle Program? - And Response (2)

Tuesday, April 15, 2014

Being new to recycling, I have lots to learn.  I rely on 311 and the attendants at the neighborhood collection centers to assist in building my knowledge.  

Recently, I had an experience that makes me reconsidered my recycling efforts.  I loaded up my car, called 311 to verify what I could take, only to be blocked by the attendant at my neighborhood collection center. The 311 operator said yes to my items, including grocery store bags marked #2. But once I got the to collection center, the attendant eagle eyed my items, and refused to allow me to place some of them in the bins, claiming those items were not allowed.  

When I returned home, I searched the Chattanooga.gov website under the recycling program, to verify what was allowed or not.  Items allowed were vague, and even more vague, what was not allowed.  I even dialed 311 and complained, and asked for further clarification of allowed items.  Sadly I was told grocery store bags are not allowed, nor plastic disposable drink cups marked #6 (curbside).  

To my understanding, neighborhood collection centers have different allowable items than does curbside collection. It appears curbside for plastics is #'s 1-7, and collection centers are only #'s 1 and 2.

Other than the 'normal' items, I want to recycle my plastic grocery store bags and plastic drink cups. When I called 311 and queried what the deal was with the grocery store bags, I was informed, they are not allowed, period. I even told the operator I verified grocery store bags were allowed, and was informed no they were not.  I even went as far as to tell the operator of a TFP article stating they were allowed in curbside from 2.9.2012 paragraph 4, along with a sidebar notation. 

This makes me wonder, why if I place appropriately marked items in my curbside recycle bin, why they will be just tossed in the trash.  Doesn't this defeat the purpose of recycling?  I can as easily toss these in the trash myself.  To me, as I am sure many others, items marked with the appropriate recycle number, should be allowed.  After all, isn't an item marked #6 or #2, the same as any other items marked the same? 

In the coming future, the city of Chattanooga will demand every city residence to recycle, if not, be subject to fines. Perhaps the city of Chattanooga should update their online data to reflect what is not allowed. Simply marking allowed recycle numbers is not accurate, apparently.

Rene A. Wood 

* * * 

The city of Chattanooga collects at your curbside every two weeks (if you live inside the city limits).  Many (most?) recycle centers are operated by Hamilton County.  The city and the county have different requirements.  311 is operated by Chattanooga for the city's programs. They wouldn't be able to tell you about Hamilton county's rules.  It's pretty simple, really. 

Of course it'd be simpler if we had one metro government and one recycle agency, but that'd make too much sense. 

Everett Kidder 

* * * 

As far as I know in the last seven years or so the city has never taken any plastic other than Type 1 and 2 with a closed neck. 

Nor have they taken grocery bags. However many stores do. Food Lion did as well as Bi-LO. Not sure about Wal-Mart or Publix but you could check. 

Also I believe the city runs the collection centers within the limits. 

R.W. Young


Chattanooga Needs The Coolidge Medal Of Honor Heritage Center

I'm pleased and indeed compelled to let you know a bit more about the exciting and most honorable "Charles H. Coolidge Medal of Honor Heritage Center" planned for Coolidge Park.     Here's what the Heritage Center will be:  It will be a fitting capstone for Chattanooga's Coolidge Park on Northshore in downtown Chattanooga.  While this exceptional Chattanooga ... (click for more)

Roy Exum: Looking For A Wife

Coeur d'Alene, Idaho, is a really cool place. I tried to buy a huge mounted buffalo head in an antique store there one time until I found out the shipping charges were four times what the head was worth. But suddenly my rapt attention is riveted on Coeur d'Alene again because a dazzling social experiment is taking place this very moment at a plush resort in north Idaho. Several ... (click for more)

Family At Bedside Of Legendary Lady Vol Coach Pat Summitt

The family of legendary Lady Vol coach Pat Summitt was at her bedside on Sunday. Erin Freeman, of the Pat Summitt Foundation, released this statement: “On behalf of Pat Summitt’s family, we acknowledge the past few days have been difficult for Pat as her early onset dementia, ‘Alzheimer’s Type,’ progresses. "She is surrounded by those who mean the most to her and during ... (click for more)

Firefighters Put Out Fire In Compost Pile At City's Wood Recycling Center

Chattanooga firefighters were called to a fire at the city's wood recycling center on N. Hawthorne Street around noon on Sunday. Battalion Chief Don Bowman said the smoke and flames could be seen from several miles away.   Firefighters with five fire companies worked to get the blaze under control, using master streams from two aerials and some hand-held hoselines. The ... (click for more)

Chris Douglas Repeats As Waterfront Triathlon Champ

Sunday was a hot, hot day, but that didn’t keep nearly a thousand local and regional triathletes from around the Southeast from putting their best foot forward in the annual Waterfront Triathlon in downtown Chattanooga. Chris Douglas and Sara Gibson were the overall winners in the International distance race, which started with a 1.5K (.93 mile) swim, followed by a 42K (26 ... (click for more)

Lookouts Capture Series From Generals With 6-2 Win Sunday

For just the fourth time this season, the Jackson Generals have lost a series with Sunday's 6-2 loss to the Chattanooga Lookouts at AT&T Field in Chattanooga, Tennessee. The Lookouts have won three of the first four in the five-game series in their quest to make it to the Southern League playoffs again. Aaron Slegers started for Chattanooga and picked up the win after eight ... (click for more)