It’s been two weeks since the new trash routes and curbside recycling started in Sedalia, and it seems citizens are slowly catching on.
Public Works Director Brenda Ardrey spoke during Monday night’s Sedalia City Council meeting to update them on the changes and to answer any questions they or their constituents may have.
Ardrey said calls about changing from twice a week to once a week trash pickup didn’t last much longer than the first day or two. Now the majority of calls are about citizens inquiring about proper recycling separation.
Mayor Stephen Galliher asked Ardrey to address why the large single-stream recycling containers are no longer at the Thompson Hills Shopping Center and the Massachusetts Avenue drop-off sites; only the glass-only containers remain.
“(Only) glass containers are at Thompson Hills and Massachusetts because the residents of Sedalia may all place their recyclables at the curb, so we’re trying to reduce carbon use here and you simply don’t have to drive to put your recyclables in the container,” Ardrey explained.
She continued by saying she’s received calls from county residents asking for the containers so they can continue recycling. Ardrey pointed out that while she encourages recycling, it’s not fair for city residents to pay for a service utilized by county citizens.
“Recycling in Sedalia has been paid through the sanitation fees or portions of the (city’s) general fund when trucks had to be replaced and there weren’t any fees left,” Ardrey said. “All the people have been asking me this week about sales tax use for sanitation; it’s not really intended to pay for sanitation or recycling.”
Ardrey added that she has told inquiring county citizens to talk with Waste Corp, which provides county trash services, about providing recycling. She said the majority of county people she suggested that to weren’t interested because there would be an added fee, as opposed to recycling for free with city containers.
During her remarks she clarified a few points, such as if a citizen puts out their recycling after the recycling truck has come through, sanitation workers will include it in trash collection “because we made a promise to not leave anything at the curb.” Also, there is no limit to how many bags or containers citizens can put curbside, but each one cannot weigh more than 75 pounds.
During the week of Oct. 3, the first week of curbside recycling, crews collected 4.45 tons of recyclable material. That number almost doubled last week, collecting 8.14 tons.
Ardrey said this type of community support can help the city obtain grants for recycling/trash containers, and increasing recycling and decreasing trash could change citizens’ trash fees in a positive way in the future.
On the trash side, 151.5 tons of trash was collected the week of Oct. 3. Last week, 173 tons was collected.
“For a community with a little over 21,000 people, that’s a lot of garbage, so we really do have a lot of work to do on recycling,” Ardrey said.
Linda Christle, outgoing executive director of Economic Development Sedalia-Pettis County, presented the organization’s annual report, which she also presented during Friday’s Pettis County Commission meeting.
Highlights from the last year, which runs November to October for EDSPC, include four new manufacturers locating to Pettis County — Marshall Electric at 100 W. Main St., Iron Tiger at 415 N. Marshall St., Midwest Metal Craft in the Windsor Industrial Park, and LAG Industries located two miles north of La Monte. Some existing companies expanded, including Koppel Fabrication, WireCo, Inter-State and General Cable, and construction is progressing on 8760 Service Group’s new location.
Of the 55 companies in an Enhanced Enterprise Zone in Pettis County, the average wage is $32,382, an increase of $1,000 from last year.
Council also heard the results of the Fiscal Year 2015-16 audit from Jeff Chitwood, of Gerding, Korte & Chitwood. He said they didn’t find any “significant issues that needed to be included in the audit.”
During the meeting council also:
• Approved a resolution further extending the moratorium on demolition permits on Ohio Avenue between Main Street and Broadway Boulevard for an additional 60 days.
• Approved a recommendation to reject bids for the U.S. Highway 50/Oak Grove Lane intersection improvements project.
• Approved a bid for a Public Works metal building at the Material Management Site.
• Approved an ordinance repealing Ordinance No. 10509 and approving and accepting Revised Amendment No. 1 to the State Block Grant Agreement with the Missouri Highways and Transportation Commission regarding the airport ramp reconstruction project at the Sedalia Regional Airport.
• Approved a recommendation to reject bids for generator maintenance services.
• Approved to accept the FY2015-16 audit results as presented by Gerding, Korte & Chitwood.
• Approved an ordinance adopting financial management policies. Council members Jeff Leeman and JoLynn Turley voted no.
• Approved an ordinance amending Sections 4-129 and 4-141 regarding hours of operations for consumption liquor licenses.
Councilwoman Bonita Nash was absent.
Nicole Cooke can be reached at 660-530-0138 or on Twitter @NicoleRCooke.