Recycling deal not so good for Wilkes-Barre

NRS (Northeast Recycling Solutions) Account Executive Ann Keating has been faxing a flyer to local municipalities in an attempt to solicit their single-stream recycling business. The flyer obtained by the Independent Gazette lists the following per ton pricing:

Newsprint   $55.00
Cardboard  $90.00
Mixed Paper $62.25
(news, cardboard, magazines, phone books, junk mail, etc.)
Co-mingles Containers  $39.43
(Type 1-7 plastics, alum & steel cans, glass bottles)
Single-Stream Recycling  $54.34
Price is market price indexed, tied to national industry publications, and will recalculate on the first of each month to reflect the actual current market. 

Based on the above rates and estimates obtained by the Independent Gazette that nearly 200 tons of single-stream recycling materials are generated by the City of Wilkes-Barre each month, a simple calculation indicates that the city should be raking in close to $10,000 in recycling revenue each month.

Over the past several months the Gazette has made numerous requests to the city in an attempt to compare pricing and determine what rate, if any, the city—which also uses the services of NRS for single-stream pick up—has been receiving for its recyclable materials. However, we were never given a clear answer. Several calls to city spokesman Administrative Coordinator Drew McLaughlin have gone unanswered. At the May 30th city council meeting we continued to press city council, the mayor, and City Administrator Marie McCormick for a response.
Our question: Is Wilkes-Barre receiving anywhere close to the $10,000 figure calculated from the NRS flyer being distributing to other municipalities?

After offering many vague answers, and much back and forth, McCormick finally responded to our question, stating that the city is paid “a flat rate of $500. That is the rate.”

Mayor Leighton added, “We didn’t get that deal,” referring to the NRS recyclables handling arrangements being offered to other municipalities.



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