Morton Twp. to offer weekly recycling starting Saturday

MORTON TWP. — Starting Saturday, residents of Morton Township will be able to drop off recyclables once a week to hopefully alleviate traffic from its previous once a month system.

FIRE STATION: Residents of Morton and Austin Townships can bring items to be recycled to the Morton Township Fire Station on Saturday. The station is located in the Canadian Lakes area and the program will be offered weekly to better intake the amount of items received. (Pioneer photo/Kyle Leppek)

The township will now offer recycling every Saturday at the Morton Township Fire Station in Canadian Lakes. The move is in response to the overwhelming number of participants who would flood the station once a month, said township Supervisor Jim Quinlan.

“It became a logistic problem when everyone saved their recycling all month long for the one day. The quantity they had and the amount of stuff that was brought on that Saturday (became) a really safety issue,” Quinlan said. “We felt that the demand and the response was enough and we needed to look at some other alternative to eliminate the mass overflow of cars and traffic.”

The township originally collected recyclables one Saturday a month to be delivered to the Big Rapids recycling center. The township has hired Allied Waste services to transport the recycling container to a Kent County recycling facility.

RECYCLE: Morton Township will now offer a weekly recycling program through Allied Waste. The program starts Saturday. Moving from a monthly program to weekly will hopefully alleviate traffic and build up which shut down collection early in the past. (Pioneer photo/Kyle Leppek)

The Kent County recycling facility uses a single-stream system, which allows residents to combine recyclables to be sorted later at the plant, said Gary Doudhett, operations manager at Allied Waste.

Besides offering residents a weekly chance to recycle, Allied Waste also collects more materials than the previous program, Quinlan said. A complete list of acceptable items and how to prepare each item for recycling is available at the township’s website at mortontownship.org.

Items can be placed in clear plastic bags for easier sorting. All items should be relatively clean and heavy soil, residue and grease should be removed, Doudhett said.

Employees will be on hand to help direct traffic and move cars through a single-file line in an orderly fashion. Although the program is designed for Morton Township residents, the township has reached out to other neighboring townships to participate in its program.

Austin Township has participated for nearly a year. The township pays $150 a month to participate and it gives residents options where to recycle, said Austin Township Supervisor Kenneth Vredenburg.

“Some residents use it and others don’t because they go to Big Rapids but there are few that use because they like the availability of it,” Vredenburg said. “If (Austin Township residents) use it more, then we might think about contributing more money.”

When the program was offered once a month, the container would become full and the program would often shut down early, Vredenburg said. He hopes offering it weekly will change that.

Residents in Morton and Austin townships can recycle from 9 a.m. to noon every Saturday at the fire station located at 8260 100th Ave. in Canadian Lakes.

For more information, contact the township at (231) 972-7138.

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