Update on Pinellas Recycling

Pinellas County is the largest county in Florida that doesn’t offer curbside recycling. Progress Florida, a nonprofit organization, is trying to petition the county for the service.

From the St. Petersburg Times:

Progress Florida of St. Petersburg e-mailed the Pinellas County Commission on Wednesday afternoon what is says are 1,028 people who want the county to move forward on the long-delayed plan to start curbside recycling pickup countywide.

“This a common sense policy already embraced by ten of Florida’s most populous counties. Pinellas County’s burn and bury approach to solid waste management is unacceptable. The time for talk is well past and we ask you to do what’s in the best economic and environmental interest of our county,” says the petition(Download PinellasRecyclingPetition), sent by the group’s executive director, Mark Ferrulo.

The proposed service has been hamstrung by commissioners’ questions over its costs (roughly $10 to $14 million annually) and effects on the county’s waste-to-energy incinerator financing. While the service would extend the life of the landfill several years, Commissioner Nancy Bostock said Wednesday morning it might be more effective to expand the capacity at the incinerator or expand commercial recycling — a point County Administrator Bob LaSala expressed recently, too.

“Are we going to get the biggest bang for our buck?” Bostock asked.

Solid waste reserve money would pay for the service, which would cover costs in the 22 cities with pickup, and in St. Petersburg and unincorporated Pinellas, which lack it.

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