Hattiesburg, Mississippi – Due to commodity market changes affecting the current recycling contractor, the City of Hattiesburg will present a new contract with a new company – Republic Recycling in Baton Rouge – on Tuesday for review by City Council.
Since 2014, the city has offered its recycling services to residents through a voluntary-pay program at a cost of $3/month added to a citizen’s water bill. This program was possible through a contract with FV Recycling, who accepted and processed the city’s collected recyclables via a single-stream program.
Single-stream collection means that the collected recyclables are co-mingled (or mixed together), and then sorted by FV Recycling. Due to commodity market changes, FV Recycling is no longer operating a single stream approach to collection. They are transitioning to a multi-stream (sorted) approach.
This situation was presented in January and February to all council members with three options that would allow the City of Hattiesburg to maintain a recycling program. Those options included:
Option 1: Transitioning to Multi-Stream with FV Recycling
This option involves the hiring of additional staff to sort recyclables, renting warehouse space and paying for baling services from FV Recycling. The total annual cost of this option would be around $150,000 per year. This option would allow the
This option would allow residents who voluntarily subscribe to the curbside recycling program to continue the same curbside recycling service but at an increased rate amount from $3.00/month to $6.57/month. This option includes a monthly increase for the resident and also provides for an increase to the general fund.
Option 2: Single Stream with Republic Recycling
This option involves transporting the collected recyclables to another single-stream recycling center. Discussions were had with Emerald Coast Utility Authority (Pensacola) and Republic Recycling (Baton Rouge). Because of altered operating procedures due to COVID-19, Emerald Coast suspended new outside contracts.
This option would allow residents who voluntarily subscribe to the curbside recycling program to continue the same curbside recycling service but at an increased rate amount from $3.00/month to $6.00/month. This is obviously a large increase, but it maintains the option for residents without incurring costs to the general fund.
Option 3: Abandon Curbside Recycling Services, Implement Community Dropoff
This option did away with the curbside program and would transition to a community drop-off system. The total cost would be $93,000; however, there would be no revenue offset via the monthly fee.
On Tuesday, the city’s administrative team will recommend Option 2 and a proposal by Republic Recycling to be reviewed and considered by the Hattiesburg City Council.
“Recycling and sustainability are community values in Hattiesburg, and the growth in our curbside recycling program over the past three years bears witness to this,” said Hattiesburg Mayor Toby Barker. “While no one wants to pay more, I am glad that we have found a path forward to continue this optional service for residents who choose to recycle.”
Recycling Options Costs Broken Down per Option | Download Here