Hazardous waste collection up at event

JOHNSTOWN – The recent Fulton County Household Hazardous Waste Drop-Off Day saw participation by 56 more residents than two years ago, officials said recently.

County Solid Waste Director Jeff Bouchard gave a report on the special collection day held Aug. 10 to the Board of Supervisors’ Economic Development and Environment Committee at the County Office Building.

The county Department of Solid Waste has been conducting the free, one-day Household Hazardous Waste Drop-Off Day in August every two years at the county landfill. The last time it was conducted was in 2011.

“We did see a slight increase,” Bouchard told supervisors.

He said participation was up from 267 residents in 2011 to 323 this summer. The amount of household hazardous waste collected was 17.3 tons, although other waste was collected at the time that pushed the total to 22.6 tons for the day. The total cost estimate for the county was $36,360 and 50 percent reimbursement will be requested through the state.

Bouchard said his department is recommending Household Hazardous Waste Drop-Off Day continue to be conducted every two years. A target date of Aug. 8, 2015 for the next collection day was discussed.

Bouchard said county residents are making use of year-round disposal and recycling programs for electronics, vehicle batteries, waste oil and household rechargeable batteries, along with summer latex paint exchange – all of which are not considered hazardous wastes.

He said if he saw 500 to 600 people participating in Household Hazardous Waste Drop-Off Day, he could see holding it every year, but the numbers don’t show that.

He said the county collected 326 gallons of latex paint, or about two tons, during the special day. He said residents can take that to the landfill year-round.