Residents will soon see fewer abandoned vehicles and tires disposed in villages.
The Mayors’ Council of Guam will release $500,000 in the first of three payments to dispose of recyclable items, announced Angel Sablan, the council’s executive director.
For fiscal 2020, Guam Environmental Protection Agency appropriated $1.3 million from the Recycling Revolving Fund to mayors. The funds are meant to clean up illegal dumping.
The maximum amount the council will give for any category of disposables is $25,000, Sablan said. That equates to a maximum of 100 vehicles per village.
“I know some of you don’t have $25,000 worth of vehicles to pick up, so rather than give you a maximum amount, you tell me what you feel you need — the number of vehicles you have — and we will give you purchase orders for that,” Sablan told the mayors.
“The processing centers where they send things don’t want vehicles with the leather, vinyl, plastic or chairs inside,” Sablan said. “In other words, the whole car has to be stripped before it is sent to the processing center.”
In the second phase, mayors will dispose of loose metals and white goods. Then they will dispose of green waste and electronics in the third and final round.
Why are disposal costs up?
Disposal costs are up because recycling centers are unable to foot labor costs.
“We have no choice because the three vendors are the same price, and if we don’t agree to the rice, the vehicle sits where they are now,” Sablan said. Vehicles are sent to Global Recycling, Pyramid Recycling, and SD Recycling.
For fiscal 2020, villages received a total of $466,000 to recycle goods. The council will return $61,000 not used to the Environmental Protection Agency.
Though the council received more funds this fiscal year than the previous fiscal year, the cost to dispose of an individual vehicle increased from $150 to $250 each.
Recycling funds were released earlier than usual.
“Initially it was always March, June or July when we started and can’t finish the funds,” Sablan said.
EPA requires the staff of mayors’ offices to be at the site of the trash pickup, whether its tires, green waste or other goods. The three phrases, broken down by the type of recyclables, streamline the cleanup.
“That gives your employees time to concentrate on one or two recyclables instead of … all over the place trying to track down the vendors,” Sablan said.
Residents should begin to prepare
In the coming months, residents can prepare to dispose of unwanted vehicles.
“For us to do this in a more consistent manner, we concentrate on vehicles and tires the first time,” Sablan said.
Mayors of each village collect recyclables if residents call into the office and make an appointment. Residents can also pay to dispose of the items themselves.
“Let your residents know that we are coming pack for the loose metals, white goods, green waste and electronics, but those will be scheduled and announced through your villages,” Sablan said.
Reach reporter Anne Wen at email@example.com.