The Elmore County Commission created a plan set to roll out in 2020 to make the county cleaner and easier for its residents to take part in the process.
Elmore County chief engineer and operations officer Richie Beyer stated the primary way to a cleaner county is through the creation of a centralized recycling and large item facility managed by the county and City of Wetumpka.
“What we hope for is this is going to make a service much more accessible to the public,” Beyer said. “Advanced Disposal has been running these county-wide cleanup days for about the past 10 years. It started out being every other month with five locations. Then we went to every other month with more locations.”
He said the main issue for residents was if they missed the day that month or arrived to a collection site and the truck was full they would have to wait another month until the next collection day.
Discussions at recent County Commission and City of Wetumpka Council meetings indicate the facility will be open seven days a week and it will be located on Red Eagle Drive in Wetumpka.
“Individuals will be able to drop off items too large for their trash cans — mattresses, grills, recliners,” Beyer said. “ They will be able to sort their recyclables, too. Cardboard, plastics, paper and things of that nature will be accepted.”
Beyer said individuals can come to the site and put large items in roll-off containers.
He expects the containers will be waist high which will make it easy to load heavy, large items into the containers.
“Wetumpka will have first rights to recycle the materials,” he said. “Everything else will be disposed of by Advanced at their facility in Tallassee.”
According to Beyer, countywide clean up days will cease once the facility opens.
A date as to when the facility will open has not been determined.
“We want to get this one up and running,” Beyer said “We plan on putting one on the west side and east side of the county as we expand. Those two locations are not in the 12- to 18-month plan, but that is what we want to do in the future.”
Beyer said the facility will be available to individuals who are Advanced Disposal customers.
According to documentation provided by the commission, in early 2020 the organization will launch a countywide anti-litter campaign.
“We are trying to encourage people to not put trash on rights of way,” Beyer said. “The campaign will encourage people not to litter.”
According to Beyer, the commission has asked judges in the county to assign community service to offenders of the law.
“We (the county) are more than welcome to give people who are facing fines community service responsibility of cleaning up a roadside” Beyer said. “We can check the work done and report back to the judges.”
The commission also created a dedicated email address for citizens who find litter or a dump site on county roads. Citizens may email photos and the location of the dumpsite to firstname.lastname@example.org.
“As we roll out this campaign, our hope is that this will get people’s attention so they can do their part to be part of the solution,” Beyer said.
Other areas where the commission is focusing additional effort include the county’s annual spring cleaning event; renewed advertising efforts of Alabama PALS Adopt-a-Mile and Adopt-a-Stream program; and partnering with churches, schools and other organizations to help facilitate cleanup efforts.
“If anybody has cleanup efforts going on, like cleaning up roadsides, the county will provide the bags and pick up the bags,” Beyer said. “We pick them up and dispose of them. There are a lot of things we can help facilitate to keep the community picked up.”
Anyone interested in assisting with keeping the county clean should contact Beyer at email@example.com or 334-398-3325.