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Letter to the Editor: Trash Collection

Township Manager Joe Golden responds to residents concerns regarding trash collection.

Effective May 1, trash, recycling, and bulk waste collection is on Fridays; yard waste collection is on Mondays.

Switching to once a week trash collection was done for two primary purposes: reduce the trash fee and to encourage recycling.

The trash fee was reduced from $345 per year to $310 per effective this year, and the fee is expected to remain at that rate for four years. This is suprising considering trash collection is labor and vehicle/gas consumption intensive.

Last year, the Township switched to single stream recycling and expanded the types of materials which can be recycled.

I refer you to the township website and the brochure delivered to each resident for a list of materials to recycle. The list expands from time to time.

For example, waxed paper milk and juice cartons may now be recycled; a year ago they were not.

During the past year, residents recycled approximately 40% more materials than the previous year. This resulted in an cost savings to the residents and an environmental benefit to the community.

For example, it costs $68 per ton to dispose of trash at the incinerator; the Township receives revenue (the amount varies according to market conditions) for every ton of recyclable materials it delivers to the recycling processing facility.

All residents were given a large recycling container to facilitate recyling collection.

The goal is to increase the amount of recyclable materials collected and reduce the amount of trash collected.

It is expected that the percentage of recyclable materials collected to trash collected will be 50/50. Twently years ago, that ratio was 85% trash/15% recyclables. This was accomplised through the efforts of Township residents, so having twice a week trash collection and once a week recycling collection seemed counter productive in reaching the goal of increasing recycling and reducing trash.

Having trash trucks traveling throughout the Township once a week rather than twice a week will reduce vehicle emissions and wear and tear on streets.

I am conerned that some residents received a brochure intended for Northampton Township residents and would like to know where those were delivered (street name is sufficient).

As submitted by Township Manager Joe Golden.

Steve G May 02, 2012 at 01:09 PM
"Say It Ain't So Joe (Golden)" Once a week trash collection is NUTS!! If the decision was made based on wear and tear of the streets and emissions (as you state), then we must assume that the individuals making these decisions have been incompetent for the decades that we have had trash collection twice a week (same wear and tear on the streets and emissions as today). You need to think of a better excuse. Mr. Golden, the decision was bad!!! A major change as trash collection which effects all residents/taxpayers should have been open to public discussion before the final decision was made. Let the taxpayers decide if they want to pay more taxes for twice a week trash collection. Reducing taxes by $25 per year is an insult. This is nothing more than a service decrease and tax increase based on the savings realized by the township. This is a hot topic and the Supervisors had the audacity to cancel Tuesdays meeting when they were well aware that many residents were going to attend the meeting to express their anger over this decision. Do the Supervisors believe that the residents will forget this issue in two weeks? The residents will be reminded of this bad decision every Tuesday when they will no longer have their trash collected. Stop taking lessons from the School Board on how to ignore public opinion and mistreat the taxpayers. Also, thanks for only giving the taxpayers a few weeks notice of this change!!! We appreciate the lack of courtesy.
Tom May 02, 2012 at 01:27 PM
Joe. Maybe Steve has too much trash. Thanks for getting the Yard Waste scheduled for Monday's. Far too often, people complain about the most mundane things.
KATE May 02, 2012 at 02:26 PM
as a pretty aware and involved community member-i knew the new cans dropped off in the winter were not to be used til the new collection-but every single person i spoke to did not know. I know the twp.tries to communicate to our community-but are seriously lacking and they need to look at that. if the township cares-and i am not sure actually about that-we should honestly look at the best ways to get the word out. some people may think that we dont do a better job because intentionally didnt want people to know until they couldnt do anything about it. i can see the point here-school board is famous for this. The point here, is that as a community member and tax payer, we all deserve more clear information about what is going on, before, during and after it is decided. I feel bad for all my neighbors who are seniors, that dragged out cans, and (some) dragged them back in, Worse, for our streets with cans full of trash sitting out there, waiting for Friday. And oh, yeah-the poor trash men, collecting those huge cans for recycling, that werent supposed to be used until now. Try posting notices at the community center, library, and putting the date it starts-May 1-in Large print,? but if you really want to fix this issue, try realizing it really is a problem-communicating with and to the community you, the Township, serve.
Ellen May 02, 2012 at 04:06 PM
Did not realize that trash days were switched. Everyone on my street has trash sitting at the curb since Monday night. Shouldn't a recent notice been sent to the homeowners. Received all the election materials and not one candidate thought to send something out about the change in trash days? Lived here for 48 years and there has always been a 2 times a week trash collection.
SPQR May 02, 2012 at 04:37 PM
Twenty five bucks is all we saved. We was robbed. The job got cut in half. Half of $345.00 is $172.50. How did we get stuck with you as our manager? Your lame excuses just don't add up. I will spread the word to vote against all incumbants. People get too comfortable after a while and just take us the taxpayers for granted.
Russell May 02, 2012 at 05:19 PM
lived in the township for over 50 years............it's now being run by idiots............it used to be run by people who truly cared.........Gray, Frasetto, Danenberg, Trost, people who you could trust.............time to get involved again and weed out the incompetants
Jennifer May 02, 2012 at 07:32 PM
I really don't understand why everyone is so upset about this. The supervisors approved this back in January, I believe. The article was in Patch or the Courier. Then we received the notice from Mascaro, which was very clear about the recycling effort. I absolutely approve of once a week trash pick-up. I can't stand seeing the cans sit outside day after day for regular trash, then yard waste, then regular trash again. I have neighbors that don't even bother bringing the cans back they just keep filling the can at the street. Enough already, you people have no idea what you sound like.
Tom Sofield May 02, 2012 at 07:50 PM
The first story was published on December 7, 2011 - http://uppersouthampton.patch.com/articles/once-weekly-trash-collection-coming-in-2012
Amy May 03, 2012 at 09:27 AM
Coming here 10 years ago from another community, I never understood twice a week pick-up anyway. Even with a family of 4 we rarely used both pick-up days. The cost savings is in labor to pick up twice a week - it still costs just as much to dispose of all that trash (landfill fees are by the ton). So it is completely unreasonable to think that it should cost half as much to have once a week pick-ups. As for me, I was thrilled to have a huge green bin. It is full every week...just didn't realize it wasn't supposed to be used until now?? Living on Bristol Rd. we always get the Northampton flyers as well as Southampton, but the Mascaro flyers were well marked by township. Yes, I sometimes have the feeling I don't know what's happening in the township, but I am not sure I have a suggestion for how to fix that. Possibly having a newsletter like Northampton. Can get expensive, but maybe offer an e-mail option - or an e-mail notification list. (or maybe there is one and I just don't know about it). My prayers are with our supervisors and township leaders - this can be a very cruel place to live.
Ken Woodring May 03, 2012 at 02:23 PM
Would like to see the township do a better job with collecting recyclables at the youth playing fields - particularly Klinger/Tamamend Pk, the Youth Ctr, Schaefer Field, Southampton Estates fields, and Veterans Field 95% of the trash at these locations is plastic bottles that could be recycled - but get thrown in the trash Would also like to see a trash and recycling drop off location in the Townships/Library parking lot. Why doesn't the Township or Library have a newspaper recycling bin in their lot - could raise some $$$? I agree that we can get by with once a week collection - but township should have done a better job with communication especially in the last week of April.
Joseph Golden May 03, 2012 at 05:27 PM
The Townhisp has an email notification list. One way to keep informed of Township news is to sign up for email alerts on the Township website at www.southamptonpa.com. There is a button on the front page of the website (right side near the top titled "sign up for email alerts"). You will receive an email notification of pertinent news article that is posted on the website. We do not send email alerts for every bit of news posted so as not to overwhelm.
Steve G May 04, 2012 at 11:20 AM
Mr. Golden The other way to keep the residents informed is to broadcast the Supervisors meetings. This was done for many years and suddenly stopped. Many residents watched these meetings on the Township channel. WHY WAS THIS STOPPED???? I think the recording of the Supervisors meetings was stopped because too many residents were informed of upcoming issues and may had attended future Supervisors meetings. The lame excuse that was given at the time was that the video camera stopped working. With all of that the money the Township is now saving on trash collection, BUY A NEW CAMERA AND START TELEVISING THE SUPERVISORS MEETING AGAIN!!!
Eric S May 07, 2012 at 01:24 AM
What you have to take into account is the fact that the amount of trash hasn't changed. Tonnage will be the same. As will the disposal costs. The trucks will be making, in my estimations, roughly the same amount of road time. No matter how you slice it, the trucks have a weight limit. Pick up a full load and head for the dump, then back again for the next load. I would think that there might be a little less mileage/time overall and that accounts for the small savings. And hey, $25 is $25. We'd be ranting about an increase of that much, so a decrease is acceptable.
Eric S May 07, 2012 at 01:31 AM
I agree. With today's ability to be aired on public access cable ALL government meetings should be televised. Failure to do so lends an air of legitimacy to concerns of secretive dealings, denial of public opinion and the ability to change the story. It seems to me any governmental body would WANT the public, who are in the end the bosses, to know exactly what business is being conducted in our behalf.

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