FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
March 5, 2004
MAYOR MICHAEL R. BLOOMBERG AND SANITATION COMMISSIONER JOHN J. DOHERTY ANNOUNCE GLASS RECYCLING AND WEEKLY COLLECTIONS TO RESUME APRIL 1ST
Program Hiatus Yields More Lucrative Recycling Contracts Allowing for Restoration of Services
Mayor Michael R. Bloomberg and Department of Sanitation (DSNY) Commissioner John J. Doherty today announced that starting April 1, the City will resume recycling glass and return to weekly recycling collections. Glass and plastic recycling was suspended in July 2002. Plastic recycling was resumed July 2003 and all collections went from weekly to bi-weekly. As of Thursday, April 1, 2004, glass will return to the recycling stream and all collections will be weekly. Metal and paper recycling was never suspended.
"Two years ago the City faced the most severe fiscal crisis in a generation," said Mayor Bloomberg. "We made the difficult decision to suspend a portion of our recycling program because costs were skyrocketing, and materials that should have been recycled ended up in landfills. Today, I am pleased to announce that we are bringing back glass recycling and weekly collections April 1 because we've found a more cost effective and environmentally friendly way to recycle."
When the glass and plastic program was suspended, the City was faced with paying more than $100 per ton for vendors to take the City's recyclables. The suspension allowed some vendors to reconfigure their operations, increase efficiency and offer the City a considerably better deal on its metal, glass and plastic recyclables. Beginning April 1, all metal, plastic and glass recyclables collected by the Sanitation Department will be delivered to the City's vendor for only $51 per ton, or roughly half of what the City would have paid if the program was not suspended.
"We are delighted that our budget situation has improved to the point where we can now resume weekly collections effective April 1," said Commissioner Doherty.
A major public outreach effort will begin shortly to inform all New Yorkers of the changes to the recycling program. The campaign will include a mailing to every City household, newspapers advertisements, and collection truck posters. Further information is available on www.nyc.gov or by calling 311.
Edward Skyler / Jordan Barowitz (212) 788-2958
Vito Turso (DSNY)