The Ely City Council voted to extend the city’s recycling program another six months at their meeting  on Aug. 13. After it’s intitial six month test run, the council decided that it needed a complete year’s worth of figures before deciding whether to continue the program or trash it.

“It’s still in it’s infancy, but we know it is important,” City of Ely Mayor Melody Van Camp said.

The city has partnered with J&M Trucking to haul recyclable goods out to the landfill, where it is then separated and recycled. The city tracked the overall tonnage of items that was recycled at the landfill. According to the mayor, the reports didn’t capture the total amount recycled so they want to have more accurate information from another six months of the program.

In addition to the tracking of tonnage, the mayor said that the city had formed a recycling committee, that will meet between two to three times a month to figure out ways to make the program as cost effective as possible. The mayor admitted that the program will never make the city money but increased recycling efforts could extend the life of the landfill, saving the city money in the long term.

Councilman Kurt Carson expressed concerns over how much money the city plans on spending on the program due to it never being able to fully recoup costs. After some discussion of political trends requiring cities to increase or start their own recycling programs, a majority of the council agreed that addressing and figuring out these problems now will stay ahead of the curve.

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