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Posted on: September 11, 2019

Recycle Committee presents recommendation to BA Council

Recycling pilot

The Citizens Recycle Committee will present its recommendation regarding curbside recycling and the use of carts to the Broken Arrow Municipal Authority (BAMA) on Sept. 17.

The Committee met twice in August to discuss a consultant’s report of the data gathered from the two pilot programs that ran from January-May of this year. After a review of the findings, the committee will recommend using a cart for recyclables and moving to once-per-week pickup. City-provided trash bags would still be provided, but at a reduced amount due to recyclables being removed from regular trash. The Committee also recommends the trash bags be phased out for a two-cart system within three years after implementation of this recommendation.  

“After meeting for over two years and studying all aspects of recycling, the Citizens Recycle Committee looks forward to making our recommendation to the City," said Russell Peterson, committee chairperson. "On behalf of the Committee, I can proudly say that this entire process has been a very thoughtful and strategic effort, involving the whole community from the beginning. This recommendation was made after evaluating the data gleaned from the two curbside recycling pilot projects, and we believe our recommendation to implement a City-provided recycling cart and phase out trash bags in three years is one that Broken Arrow citizens can live with.”

BAMA, which is comprised of the five City Councilors and oversees the City’s Sanitation service, will take the committee’s recommendation, as well as any City staff recommendations, under consideration before making a final decision sometime this fall.

If BAMA adopts a cart-based curbside recycling program, it will likely take a year or more for the City to implement curbside recycling for all sanitation customers in the City. The lengthy implementation is required for logistical reasons, such as purchasing and distributing carts, determining new routes, training personnel and purchasing or retrofitting trucks for carts.

The BAMA meeting immediately follows the regular Sept. 17 City Council meeting, which begins at  6:30 p.m., in the City Council Chambers at City Hall, 220 S. 1st St.

About the Citizens Recycle Committee

The Committee, comprised of 12 members of the public and two Councilors (one as an alternate), was formed in fall 2016 after a citizens survey in Spring 2016 showed a favorable attitude to implementing a curbside recycling program in the City. Committee members were tasked with understanding the opinions of Broken Arrow refuse customers and to serve as a guide for the development of future refuse and recycling services.

Meeting 14 times between November 2016 and July 2017, the committee recommended two pilot programs to determine the best possible solution for Broken Arrow. One pilot program utilized two carts, one each for trash and recyclables, while the other utilized one recycling cart and continued the use of City-provided trash bags. Both pilots utilized one pickup per week.

About BA’s Refuse Service

Broken Arrow’s Sanitation Division provides refuse pickup services to more than 33,000 residential solid waste customers. Residents receive twice-weekly trash service, either Monday/Thursday or Tuesday/Friday.

Sanitation crews collect approximately 3,100 tons of refuse monthly. This varies throughout the year based on yard waste. The average Broken Arrow household generates about 203 pounds of solid waste per month. Refuse is taken to the Covanta Energy from Waste Facility. Covanta is approximately 15 miles from the center of Broken Arrow.

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