Hopes to decrease residents’ fees
by Dawn Feddersen-Poindexter
The Rogers City Council agreed to changes in recycling services that could lead to a decrease in residents’ recycling fees and more recycling in the city.
The council approved a new five-year contract with Randy’s Environmental Services, the city’s current recycling hauler. The new contract includes several new favorable terms for residents and the city.
Randy’s has lowered the cost of their services in the city. City Administrator Steve Stahmer told the council that he and his staff were working on amending residents’ recycling fees to reflect the lower cost of the service. In addition, recycling receptacles will be switched to large, no-sort recycling bins that will be provided to residents free-of-charge and at no cost to the city.
“I like the fact that the bins have wheels and they’re covered by a lid,” Mayor Jay Bunting enthused. “How many times on a windy day have you seen papers blowing down the road? Or the cans blowing away?”
Recycling pick-up day will remain on Friday, but with the change to larger bins, pick-up will occur every other Friday. The changes will take effect in April of this year. Residents will receive more information in the mail before the new service’s onset.
Assistant City Administrator/City Clerk Stacy Doboszenski is hoping that by making recycling easier, it will motivate residents to recycle more. Currently, Rogers residents recycle 400 pounds per household per year, on average. Hennepin County is requiring that its cities recycle 725 pounds per household per year by the end of 2015. If Rogers does not comply, they risk losing the more than $30,000 they receive from the county to help offset the cost of their recycling program.
Referring to the new no-sort bins, Jim Wollschlager, Vice President of Corporate Operations at Randy’s, predicted, “You’re going to see recycling volumes go up 20 to 30 percent because of this.”
Wollschlager also said that residents will now have the option for a compost service, as well. The service will not be provided by the city, but if a resident contacts the company they can add on a compost bin and compostable bags to their service. The resident need only fill the compostable bag and simply toss it in with their regular trash. The bag will be sorted out of the trash and returned to the Randy’s facility, where it will be composted.
Another bonus for homes that choose to compost, according to Wollschlager, is “Everyone who signs up will get a coupon for a 40-pound bag of compost that, really, they helped to create.”
Wollschlager told the council that the compost it receives from Rogers residents will also count towards the city’s recycling numbers that the county will be monitoring.
In other news, the council honored eight area Boy Scouts who have recently achieved the rank of Eagle Scout.
The young men performed community service work ranging from landscaping, building benches, and even building stairs to help train service dogs, all for local non-profits and churches.
Sam Gentle from Rogers Troop 582, worked with a non-profit organization which trains service dogs for people with disabilities. Sam worked on multiple projects including building new wooden training stairs, held a dog toy drive and arranged a presentation to educate others about service dogs.
Tyler Pinter from Rogers Troop 582, built a large garden storage shed for a local church-sponsored Community Garden Club
Jakob Dotterer , formerly of Rogers Troop 582 and now a member of Otsego Troop 590, built wooden benches now being enjoyed by students at a local elementary school
Jared Dotterer from Rogers Troop 582, built wooden benches for visitors at a local non-profit organization that sponsors shooting education for various organizations
Nathan Pinter from Rogers Troop 582, built a rain garden to assist with parking lot rainwater runoff for a local church
Kent Hoover , formerly of Rogers Troop 582 and now a member of Maple Grove Troop 531, renovated a fire ring with new landscaping for a local park
Collin Young from Rogers Troop 582, built a large retaining wall along with new landscaping for a local church
Austin Gordon from Rogers Troop 582, remodeled a storage facility for the theatre group at a local school
Six of the Eagle Scouts are current members of Rogers Troop 582 bringing the total number of Eagle Scouts hailing from the Troop to 18.
In other action:
APPROVED a waiver of the Community Room rental fee for a benefit for the family of Ryan Harth, a city employee, who died suddenly Dec. 24, 2012. All proceeds will go to Harth’s wife, their young son, and their baby-on-the-way, due in July. The event will feature a spaghetti dinner, band, raffles, and fun for children. The benefit will take place March 24 from 12-5 p.m. in the Rogers Community Room.