Columbia residents continue to drop off their recycling at centers as bins overflow

Posted on 5 August 2020 at 7:36pm

COLUMBIA — It's been almost one month since Columbia residents were told their recycling would no longer be picked up and they must bring them to one of the 11 drop off spots around town.

Even with multiple locations bins can be seen overfilled with items on the ground. Sanitation workers recommend breaking down or folding boxes to create more room in the bins.

In a July press release, the City of Columbia said the change was due to "Severe staffing shortages, primarily finding and retaining Commercial Driver’s License (CDL) Operators...In addition, finding buyers for recyclable materials has become difficult, if not impossible."

According to a KOMU report, last year the city saw a 27% decrease in revenue from recycling.

While some Columbia residents are frustrated by still having to take a weekly trip to the drop off locations, Lee Harmon feels like he's doing his part to help the city.

“I’m making a daily trip down this way for one reason or another so no big deal to drop every week when it accumulates," Harmon said.

The city is looking at removing curbside recycling altogether and adding more drop off locations or it could provide roll carts.

The Columbia City Council will vote August 17 on an ordinance to put the issue of roll carts on the November ballot.