Input sought on waste management plan

Island County is asking for public comment on its plan to dispose of waste, including garbage, recycling and “moderate-risk waste.”

The plan, which is required by state law, provides guidance for the county’s programs for waste reduction, recycling, compliance and enforcement and proper management of moderate-risk waste over the next six years. Public Works staff is in the process of updating the document, which was created in 2014, and is accepting comments until July 31.

A public hearing on the plan is 6 p.m., July 24 in the commissioner’s hearing room.

“We’re looking for any gaps that people could identify that we’ve missed,” said county Solid Waste Manager Joantha Guthrie.

The update addresses the significant downturn in the market for recycled materials that occurred in 2018. Because of these changes, the plan doesn’t recommend expanding recycling programs until the market improves.

There are recommendations to eventually add curbside recycling in Langley and Freelend, once the markets improve.

Among its goals are to develop public-private partnerships for waste reduction, emphasize reduction and recycling as fundamental strategies and provide customers with information to promote waste management practices, according to the plan.

For “organics,” such as yard and food waste, the document recommends considering composting at the Island County Solid Waste Center.

The full document on the solid waste page of Island County Public Work’s website and copies are available to view at each of the libraries on the island.

• Comments may be sent to Joantha Guthrie at joanthag@co.island.wa.us

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