HAZLETON — Hoping to improve the appearance of neighborhoods, help area residents and bring more people to the city, officials have organized Hazleton’s inaugural electronic recycling event.
Flanked at a recent press conference by Council President Jim Perry and Councilman Kevin Schadder, Mayor Joe Yannuzzi announced the initiative in a city parking lot on East Chestnut Street between South Pine and South Wyoming streets — the site of the event to be held from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. on Sept. 14.
Because state regulations no longer allow electronic items to be disposed of in landfills and garbage haulers will no longer collect them, appliances and TVs have been sitting on sidewalks and porches, as well as in yards and abandoned in wooded areas for weeks, Yannuzzi said.
Yannuzzi said he threw his full support behind the idea for an electronics recycling event when Perry and Schadder approached him with it.
“We’ve never had (electronics) recycling in the city itself. It’s always been in Hazle Township and Butler Township, and we think it’s important here,” said Perry. “I think it’s a good start to help clean up the city, and I think people will be appreciative.”
Advanced Green Solutions, of Walnutport, will be recycling the electronics, Perry said. Most items will be accepted for free, including flat-screen TVs, computers, washers and dryers, stoves, dishwashers, CRT and LCD monitors, dehumidifiers, cables and cords, printers, fax machines, telephones and video game systems.
There will be a $10 charge for tube televisions; $15 for appliances that contain Freon; and $20 for console or projection televisions.
Schadder said people leaving their old electronics on sidewalks is “a real epidemic,” and electronic recycling events have worked well in other municipalities.
The event is open to anyone who wants to get rid of their electronics, Schadder and Perry said. And the councilmen will coordinate a free pick-up of items from senior citizens and disabled people who can’t get to the event.
Not only will the event help residents dispose of their unwanted electronics, help the environment and make the city look better, said Schadder, but Advanced Green Solutions will make a payment to the city based on the amount of electronics received. The minimum could be about $1,000.
Yannuzzi said helping residents and making the community look better is his main concern, not the money from AGS. “That’s just an added benefit,” he said.