Springfield Officials Decide on 2013 Garbage and Recycling Collection Schedule

Recycling and trash will both be picked up once a week.

After debate from members of the public and officials, the Springfield township committee voted to have weekly garbage and recycling pickups.

Under the terms of the agreement, Regional will handle garbage and Giordano will handle recycling. Recycling will be “single stream,” meaning that residents will not have to separate paper recycling from cans and plastic and can just put out one container of recyclable materials. As part of the agreement with Giordano, for each ton of recycling collected in Springfield, the township will receive a $3 rebate. E Officials estimate that the rebate will amount to about $5,000, which will be in addition to the approximate $35,000 worth of recycling rebates Springfield receives annually from the state and county.

Residents were split on the proposal to reduce garbage pickup from a twice weekly to a weekly schedule. While some thought the change would be a painless way to encourage more recycling, others worried that less frequent garbage collection would cause smells and attract rodents, particularly in warmer months.

Members of Springfield’s Environmental Commission spoke in favor of the proposal to increase recycling pickup and stagger garbage collection, saying that the impact would be minimal when weighed against the considerable benefits. One Commission member said that twice a week garbage pickup is a rarity for towns like Springfield. The member said that the convenience and frequency of the garbage collection discouraged recycling and cost Springfield money, as the township is charged for trash and can receive a rebate for recycling.

Alison Miller, also a member of the Environmental Commission, said the inconvenience would be negligible.

“I really only need [garbage collection] once a week,” Miller said. “My problem is my overflowing recycling.”

Other residents present at the meeting worried that storing garbage would create smells and attract rodents.

While they were expressed concerns about smells and about locking into a three year contract, township employees and officials were favored once a week garbage pick ups.

“We’re continuing in the right direction,” Springfield recycling coordinator Joseph Sarno said. “With more education, we’ll have more recycling. It will only help us.”



Michele December 26, 2012 at 01:20 PM
Being as it is now if our garbage is left for more than 1 or 2 nights our cans are getting chewed through! What would happen after 5 nights!! Many town's supply their residents with garbage cans. Short of that I would defiantly not be in favor of this as a family of 5 we produce a good amount of garbage and can't keep buying news cans every couple of months.
BART FRAENKEL December 26, 2012 at 02:27 PM
People will have to make an effort to recycle now in order to reduce their garbage volume, and that isn't such a big price to pay to help the township and the environment. The only question I have, that wasn't addressed in the article, is when the single day pickup will occur. Hopefully they'll use Tuesdays and Wednesdays as the pickup dates in order to avoid Monday holidays.
Matt December 26, 2012 at 04:43 PM
Bad idea. We borrow money for a turf field that is important to about 5% of residents, and we cut garbage collection in half. Are you kidding?
qwerty07081 December 26, 2012 at 06:03 PM
The Town website has posted a tentative update on the garbage and recycling collection for 2013. Homes with collections currently on Monday and Thursday would be Thursdays going forward and those with collections currently on Tuesday and Friday would be Friday in 2013. Recycling would be on neither of these days as it would be collected on Wednesday. Therefore, though the Town saves $100k+, residents still have to bring items to the curb on two separate days. This will be an adjustment for parts, if not half, of the town that can bring both garbage and recycling out at the same time. I guess now we are all equally inconvenienced. If the town wants to be truly "green" with their initiatives, take the savings/rebates from the changes and purchase compost bins for homes so that organic material can be kept out of the cost of tonnage paid to the garbage companies. In turn the compost can be used in the community garden area.
Mike Andreola December 26, 2012 at 07:45 PM
Another bad idea! First , no grass pick up. Now this! Give me a break. I sure hope the 5% enjoy the turf field. This is nuts.
Debbie Levine December 26, 2012 at 11:06 PM
We will simply overflow each week since our household has 3 large men/boys. As it is we fill 2 full-size garbage cans with recyclables and 3 bags of newspapers q 2 weeks. Exactly how does decreasing garbage pick-up increase one's recycling efforts? Just gonna cause frustration. As it is we put out more recycling than most others on our street. Maybe the town should check with other towns to see which companies might be cheaper. And this has nothing to do with the turf field!
Shane Ronan December 26, 2012 at 11:25 PM
The contract was put out for competitive bid with multiple companies bidding, Regional and Giordano being the low bidders.
Catherine Flynn December 26, 2012 at 11:32 PM
I hope trash isn 't Fridays. If you decide to go away for a 3 day weekend, you won't be home to put away the trash can. And asking a neighbor to do it is out of the question. So, you have to hold your trash in your garage for an extra week. It smells after a day, never mind a week or two. Some believe in cutting services to "save" money.
Laura Petersen December 27, 2012 at 01:23 AM
Great decision. Maybe now more people will choose recycling when disposing of their trash. And I'm that 5% some of you are referring to ... wherever you get that figure ?? I known it's a lot higher. Our kids deserve decent athletic fields. Yay turf field !!
B Freeman December 27, 2012 at 02:48 AM
Let's see Recycling is once a week a instead of every other week and you don't have to seperate paper from plastic. New contract saves money. Less garbage going to the dump saves money on tonnage fees of putting the garbage in the dump. More recycleables collected more money back from the state and county. Less in the dump and better for the environment Now all we have to do is to get the lazy residents of Springfield to recycle more and put a lid on thier trash can. That is the toughest challenge yet to come.
BART FRAENKEL December 27, 2012 at 03:49 AM
With the exception of fresh fruit, just about every other item a household uses (food, etc.) comes in a wrapper that can be recycled. Are the people who aren't in favor of this change recycling, because I don't understand how garbage volume will be a problem if people are recycling.
MJ December 27, 2012 at 12:59 PM
I recycle. It is not that hard. Stop all the crying and do what the Powers to be want, then when you put your your trash out on thursday night because your going out of town , it will be the towns fault. When the smell gets out of hand it will be the towns fault. When we start haveing a rodent problem it will be the towns fault. Since we only going to get trash pick up once a week, then will this result in lower taxes or just moving my tax dollars to another bullshit project.
B Freeman December 27, 2012 at 04:28 PM
MJ - how ignorant of you. Summit has once a week pickup and so does several other towns surrounding Springfield. I haven't heard of a rodent problem or a smell issue. If you recycle more then you have less garbage. If you properly close your garbage can then there isn't a smell. Regarding taxes - taxes go up every year. Please point to the town that taxes don't go up and then move there. Seriously, every year there are cost drivers. Just because you save moeny in one area of the budget doesn't there aren't other areas that go up beyond thier control. Example if you read the letter that is sent out every year, 50% of your taxes goes towards the schools. The other 20% goes to the county. Go whine to those two entities. The township did you and the environment a favor.
Marley December 27, 2012 at 05:07 PM
When you have 2 toddlers, dirty diapers can leave a disgusting smell when left outside for days, ESPECIALLY in warm months. We recycle everything and still fill our 2 garbage cans full 2x per week.
t pearl December 27, 2012 at 06:10 PM
I am excited about trying this once/week garbage & recycling. For me personally, my garbage is usually 1 bag 2x/week & my recycling is overflowing in 2 wks. But even bigger, it is a way to save $ and not have more taxes or give up some other service in town that is more essential. Change is hard to embrace, but give it a try, you might find you like it.
The Voice of Reason December 27, 2012 at 07:29 PM
I am in favor of reducing waste disposal through recycling. The challenge will be to break the status quo and get us to do things differently. If the Enviro Commission wants us to recycle by composting, how about posting some "how to" links on the township website? If you look at the EC's page on the township's web site, it offers a way to recycle styrofoam, nothing else. How about creating a partnership with a local vendor to purchase composting equipment and supplies at a reduced cost? Same thing with garbage cans. A good, sturdy can costs about $60, each home would need at least two. A partnership to buy them in bulk coordinated through the twp may make buying the sturdy ones affordable. I have two cheap-o rubbermaid cans which have holes on the bottom from being dragged to the back of the truck on collection day and holes in the lid from the mutant raccoons chewing on them. Perhaps these suggestions might offer some incentive to change ways.
Bob Groder December 27, 2012 at 11:12 PM
I personally dont need garbage picked up more than once a week but matt makes a valid point as does michelle. what about large families and what about holidays when the pickups might end up missing a week which means then its 2 weeks between pickups? i hope they thought this out as i was out of town on the night for discussion and the vote. to save a few $$$ is good but matt makes a point that the current mayor ( soon to be ex mayor ziad shehady) has no problems adding on to the towns cost by borrowing 3 million dollars to build a turf field and also the current republican run administration had no problems adding to the legal cost of the attorneys fees in 2012 but to save a small amount of money for garbage pickup to save money that we wont see a dime of in our taxes when does it end? I know taxes go up every year everywhere but whose fault is that? not the tax payers but the system which needs changing. i am personally fed up with taxes going up without having a say on how to fix the problem. I know that 50% goes to the school cost and a lot is out of control but we need someone who has the guts to tackle the system and try and change it. but i guess if those fools in washington, d.c. cant fix the fiscal cliff without gimmicks i shouldnt expect anything different elsewhere. time to stop the bleeding and control our costs before NOONE can afford to live in New Jersey any longer.
Jeff strumpf December 28, 2012 at 04:43 AM
Folks this is an idea worth trying. If it saves us money I'm all for it. Recycling every week is great and not having to separate the paper from plastic makes it less of a hassle. Everyone needs to be a little flexible during these trying economic times
B Freeman December 28, 2012 at 01:35 PM
Large familes should have more trash cans than small families regardless of the number of pick-ups per week. More people equals more garbage and more recyclables. Lame arguement. Second, the entire committee voted for the turf field. No one single person to blame. You can't pass a bond unless you have 4 votes. So Huber and Amlen could of voted no and that would have been the end of the turf field and them. Their vote counted just as much as Shehady, Fernandez and Kraus, no more no less. Why don't you spend some time talking to the town CFO regarding the town finances. Shehady, Fernandez, and Kraus spent 2010 and 2012 cleaning up all the overspending they inherited form the Democrats. Saved over a million dollars on the town employees health insurance. They hired a professional township adminstrator for less then the last local yokel. They reduced overtime in Police and Fire becuase they properly staffed those departments. More shared services with other townships to include Health Department services and most recently signing a 3 year garbage contract with 2 option years instead of locking us in a 5 year contract like the Dems did 5 years ago. They paid down the debt passed on by the Dems and list goes on and on. Bob, you really need to talk to the people that run the town on a day to day basis. You might actually learn something instead of the spin from Dems or Republicans for that matter.
Nancy Kaplan December 28, 2012 at 06:42 PM
I am glad that there will be a cost savings to the town as well as additional revenue from recycling. Most of us were troubled by collecting recycling and holding it for two weeks and if you missed a recycle then it was one month recycling to hold. Not having to sort out the recyclables will be another convenience. If people make a great effort to crush boxes, recycle their cans, plastic bottles etc the only remaining waste is low volume plastic wrapping, and scraps from meat and vegetables. There are many benefits to composting your grass clippings with kitchen waste. (meat is not appropriate to compost.) My dogs appreciate meat left overs in their regular dog food. For those who use disposible diapers purchasing contractor bags and steel or sturdy garbage cans can be a help to minimize odors. There are ways to individually wrap the diapers to minimize odors too. I have built a small shed to keep my garbage cans and recyclables out of the sun and out of reach of critters. This is a medium to easy project with many plans available online. There are also garbage can sheds available at home depot. I applaud our town council for this effort and know that even though not everyone is happy with change this is a change for the better.
Princess Valiant December 29, 2012 at 04:23 PM
Beg space in a friend's trash can from another town. Perhaps Millburn? I do like the idea of a composting area, and while our new turf field (npt my choice!) won't need it, the home gardener does.
Emmelyn Mailley December 29, 2012 at 04:26 PM
I heard there was an offer by a local resident to pay for the turf field in return for the naming right ....is this true and if so why was this offer not accepted saving the town this considerable expense......
Shore Girl December 30, 2012 at 05:50 PM
Why take the offer?, when we can spend more money!!! This town is a joke!
Shane Ronan December 30, 2012 at 09:09 PM
My understanding is that this was strictly a rumor with no fact behind it.
BART FRAENKEL December 30, 2012 at 09:25 PM
Shane is 100% correct on this one too.
Anonymous December 31, 2012 at 03:43 AM
I have neighbors that have never recycled and probably never will unless the program is enforced. Perhaps the township should start placing more attention on these residents and fining them if they do not comply with recycling. Also, I agree with a statement previously made. All home owners should be given trash and recycling cans. Other towns have these for residents.
Nick December 31, 2012 at 05:45 AM
As a resident of Springfield I receive alerts to my home phone for any important information that is being conducted in town. I NEVER received a call about the consideration of changing garbage pick up. I believe if a vote from ALL the residents was conducted there would still be a two day garbage pick up. I truly believe this issue was not publicized via phone alerts or any other way due to 1. An over crowded town hall meeting with angry residents 2. Not getting their way of a one day pick up. We all have busy schedules where we can't make it a hobby to attend every town hall meeting like some, but a notification on an important issue would be truly HELPFUL IN OBTAINING AN HONEST AND ACCURATE VOTE.


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