A number of issues were addressed at the last meeting of the Joint Townships Waste Management Committee:
Single Stream: Committee member Doug Tilly indicated single stream processing of waste continues to be delayed because of the temporary unavailability of a backordered electrical switch. Another issue expected to hamper the transition to single stream processing was the failure of Charlevoix County ship appropriate steel waste hoppers to the Island. The hoppers sent by the County were the wrong size and do not work well with the new single stream equipment and therefore the hoppers must be manually filled —a labor intensive process. The Station will place an order for two new hoppers for April delivery. Tilly advised the committee that wholesale prices for plastic green bags are going up and this will have an impact on retail charges for green bags.
Returnable [aluminum & plastic] Beverage Containers: A lengthy discussion took place cornering returnable aluminum and plastic beverage containers and the challenges the Station has in storing the containers and the problems BICS students have with the sorting process. Andy Stebbins (Chair, Beaver Island Community School Board) and Will Cwikiel (Beaver Island Community School Superintendent-Principal), who attended the meeting, underscored the value of the partnership with the Station in allowing the recyclable containers to be collected and stored at the Station. Both men observed the project generates considerable income for student sports. Paul Cole, who chairs the Waste Management Committee, added he would see if the St. James Township Trustees would be amenable allowing stored recyclables to be stored and sorted in the Marina Storage Facility. Marsh indicated if the Marina Facility was available for use the collection of returnable beverage containers could continue. Cwikiel indicated BICS would be willing to defray some of the costs associated with storing and transporting the recyclables. A satisfactory agreement was recheaded; and the partnership was expected to continue. Cole will get back to Marsh and Cwikiel on the use of the Marina Storage Facility.
New Committee Member: Committee Chair Paul Cole announced that since St. James Trustees recently elected Joe Moore Township Supervisor, newly elected St. James Trustee Vicky Fingerroot would replace Moore on the seven member joint township committee. The changeover is effective January 2022.
Roll On Roll Off Tire Service: Paul Cole announced he was working with a waste management consultant currently under contract with the committee to explore an opportunity to have a Goodyear tire distributor visit the island this summer to pick up and shed worn tires and to offer residents an opportunity to purchase new tires. Cole indicated he would keep the committee apprised of the negotiations to secure “roll on/roll off” tire service for Beaver Islanders.
Top Three Committee Priorities (goals and objectives) for FY 2021/22: The Chair indicated the need to focus on Committee priorities for the 2021/2022 operational year, such as Station staffing; space, and new equipment needs. It was the sense of the committee that discussions about space, personnel and equipment would be facilitated by having comparative annual data for several past years available for review. Don Marsh, the Station Manager, indicated he could pull this data together for the January 2022 meeting, which is scheduled for 1:30pm on January 18th at the Peaine Township Hall.