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Closson property, recycling discussed at Lambertville city council meeting

By Karen Taylor

A resolution to award a contract for a feasibility study on the Closson property passed at Tuesday’s meeting of Lambertville City Council.

Mayor Fahl said the study relates to the police station, and more information on construction costs will be available in 30 to 45 days.

Discussion of Lambertville’s Third Can Program began with the mayor’s concern that the truck currently being used for the program is in terrible condition and not expected to last long. The city currently picks up food waste from restaurants three times a week and collects from about 200 residences once a week.

The recycling is hauled to Waste Management in Edison. Use of the Waste Management facility was initiated as a temporary measure when another company refused to accept Lambertville’s waste due to excessive contamination. The cost and time required to haul waste to Edison are driving the city’s need to change this recycling program.

A presentation on options for the recycling program was made by Gary Sondermeyer, vice-chairperson of Sustainable New Jersey. He stated that 24.8 percent of garbage is food waste and yard waste contributes an additional 5 percent. Nearly half of food waste comes from residences.

Sondermeyer said there are no requirements from the Department of Environmental Protection that would prevent operating a convenience center at the Department of Public Works or some other site in the city. Such a center would need to be monitored to make sure only appropriate material is brought in. There are at least three haulers in this area who could remove the waste and take it to a processing center, and there is a processing company located in Trenton. Mayor Fahl said she would like to get quotes from haulers and allow them to decide where the waste should be taken.

Liz Magill of the Environmental Commission sketched out plans for a public education effort for the Third Can Program. It will include an infographic, social media outreach, email and direct mail, notices on the city website and in Lambertville Matters, a “sort-your-trash with the mayor” video plus outreach to local schools. The mayor indicated she would like to expand the program beyond the current 200 participants, but admitted that Lambertville near capacity under the current program.

Councilwoman Julia Taylor brought up the problem of harassment in Lambertville. She has received email from residents associated with Lambertville United claiming they are being harassed and that lawn signs have been stolen. Mayor Fahl spoke about the importance of respecting diverse opinions and suggested that any thefts of personal property be reported to the police. Council concurred with her remarks.

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1 Comment

  • Hunterdon County’s Solid Waste & Recycling Coordinator has been left out of the conversation. I wish the City of Lambertville would play ball with neighboring municipalities and County programs. Also, the city’s DPW is a disgusting mess. (have you ever seen it?) Try cleaning up after yourself and maybe you’ll find a functional space to work in. Hopefully the City’s next Mayor will be less obstinate and more experienced…

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