Let’s recycle thinking on local recycling


December 23, 2015 - 12:00 AM

As we think more about recycling a variety of household packaging and other things, it would be good to take a look at what has occurred in Franklin County.
The Lake Region Earth Team Recycling Task Force began recycling in 1989 with pickup in a couple of merchandisers’ parking lots in Ottawa. As many as six counties were involved at the start, with an old bread truck used to fetch recyclables from outside Ottawa.
A paid administrator — from grant funding — led the effort, but all others were volunteers. When it began to slip, Franklin County took over. “We still have an excellently run collection here in Franklin County, and we should be proud of the continued success of our recycling more than 20 years later,” Joan Vibert, the original director, was quoted in the Ottawa Herald.
In addition to grant funding for administration, the team attracted grants for a glass crusher and small plastics baler.
Paper, glass, plastic, cardboard and various metals all are recyclable.
Iola Rotary Club members and several others, who wish to remain in the background at this point, partly are being marshaled by Jeff Cokely, new director of the Allen County Community Foundation, to broaden the local effort.
Allowing himself to be long on vision but sometimes short on details, Cokely told the Register he was enthusiastic about the prospects of before long recycling more than newspapers and magazines — which started here about the same time as the Franklin County project.
Economics aren’t a selling point at this time, but may be in the not-so-far future. And, with clutter and potential pollution from throw-aways, state and federal regulations may enter the arena.
All we need is a core group of individuals with the same excitement potential as Cokely and a group of volunteers who want to make our county — maybe adjoining ones, as well — a leader in helping preserve our little corner of the world in a better manner.
Never-say-die can go a long way.
— Bob Johnson

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