Las Vegas Sun

August 22, 2014

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Letter to the editor:

Recycling bins fill up faster than trash

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I just finished reading a letter to the editor saying trash pickup should remain twice a week and recycle collection on a weekly basis. This was right after I placed plastic bags of food and pet waste in my garbage can, still half full after missing the last pickup, and odorless. However, my four recycle bins (one donated by a nonrecycling neighbor) can hardly accommodate an empty two-liter bottle and weekend newspapers, and the next pickup is eight days away.

Southern Nevada in the first area I have seen twice-a-week garbage pickup. Growing up in a large eastern city, when large families and extended families were common, and “luxury” items like garbage disposals and trash compactors were unknown, the norm was one pickup and two cans if needed per home. Special scheduled pickups were made seasonally for discarded items, garden waste and trimmings, holiday items, furniture, etc.

If a person fills his garbage can with a few large plastic containers, pizza boxes or Styrofoam packing, the cans will fill up in no time. But with a little effort, with the trash company making it easy, the only excuses for failing to recycle are laziness or lack of respect for our environment.

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  1. I second and third the letter writer and Freeman's comments. I consistently find that our Familie's recyclable containers fill to the brim while the garbage/trash containers have room to spare. Republic Services was right on this.

    CarmineD

  2. It's a no-brainer. When one recycles, the volume of "garbage" is greatly reduced. Sometimes, my wife & I go 3 cycles without putting out a "garbage" can while the red, white & blue receptacles fill to the brim. Recycling poses no undue burden upon anyone, so why not do it?

  3. There is no valid reason to exchange a good long term contract for lesser service simply because Republic Services gave nearly $300,000 to our elected officials in return for a more profitable contract. My neighbors and I don't find it difficult to recycle. Republic will provide any number of bins you want. There is no requirement to seperate the recyclables today. We choose to store overflow in cardboard boxes and grocery bags which are all picked up and placed into Republics single stream truck bin. Yes, the new containers would make it more convienient so give us the containers! Don't cut services from 5 pickups every two week to 3. Oh, and Robert, all that dog poo and food waste, well guess what, the next itteration of this will mandate that you further seperate this waste. Then, as they now do in San Francisco, the trash police will be watching you, issuing fines all this extra care for a mear $28, not the $11 we now pay.

  4. Oops. Should have run my spell checker!
    In response to Robert Latchford's letter about the problem with recycling bins, I say he is right about the bins and wrong about service. Republic Services is no different than General Mills, the maker of corn flakes. Both understand that to increase profit all that is necessary is to keep the "box" the same size and simply reduce the content. There is no valid reason to exchange a good long term contract for lesser service simply because Republic Services gave nearly $300,000 to our elected officials in return for a more profitable contract. My neighbors and I don't find it difficult to recycle. Republic will provide any number of bins you want. There is no requirement to separate the recyclables today. We choose to store overflow in cardboard boxes and grocery bags which are all picked up and placed into Republics single stream truck bin. Yes, the new containers would make it more convenient so give us the containers! Don't cut services from 5 pickups every two week to 3. Oh, and Robert, all that dog poo and food waste, well guess what, the next iteration of this will mandate that you further separate this waste. Then, as they now do in San Francisco, the trash police will be watching you, issuing fines all this extra care for a mere $28, not the $11 we now pay.

  5. I use a compactor. I have no problems.

  6. We have been on the new program for some time and have found it convenient and sufficient for our needs.

    That said, I agree with Richard. It represents a reduction of service to increase profits.

    The problem resides in Republic Services, part of Waste Management, Inc., being a monopoly contract. It could be said the only competition is between companies is how much they can afford to ply the politicians for their contract.

    Unlike other products, we have no choice but to accept what they want to hand us.

    I have changed my purchasing when I note that a company has adjusted their package contents or recipes in order to maintain or increase profits.

    When the profit for our labor decreases in a recession or through inflation, there is no reason that a company shouldn't feel the same pain in their profit margin. It might change the dynamics of a very bad economic period.

    Instead, profits trump everything for those who can make enough to influence the political powers, ensuring they continue to grow profits at the expense of the rest of the population.

    And while I am at it here, let me blow off some steam on what is being termed "no new tax cuts" and "no new revenues" in the latest "pull the wool over the eyes" of the people game related to the budget non-negotiations.

    Loopholes are "tax expenditures/spending", as are deductions, which include mortgage interest for individuals, preferred tax rates, deferred tax treatments, subsidies, etc. They are a form of "entitlement" spending by the government through tax policy/programs.

    In 2012 the total "tax expenditures" cost the government $1.3 trillion in revenues. Imagine how the elimination of many of those would serve to reduce our deficits over 10 years.

    Tax expenditures are the loss of federal revenue, which shifts the tax burden to those who don't have the clout or money to influence the politicians in their favor.

    Richard, consider that box of corn flakes with it's reduced content like a "tax expenditure". It should have been there but isn't. The reduction is like a loophole allowing the content to be less, benefiting the company.

    That is not a "tax cut", it is a special deal to withhold revenues from the government to increase profits. The government creates a program to give the company a special "entitlement" and creating a government expenditure to be made up elsewhere, or not.

    What a shell game, and one that benefits the wealthy, individuals and corporations, way more than anyone else.

    Republic Services receives it's benefits through "tax expenditure entitlements" programs, but it doesn't get passed on to customers. It goes to stakeholders.

    When discussions go on about more tax revenue being off the table, let's not forget that closing loopholes, etc. are really about not losing tax revenue by the government through special deals for those who can afford to buy a special box of corn flakes with the full content at a special store.

  7. RefNV,

    "Republic Services still picks up the same amount each month."

    Good point.

    On the other side, jobs are cut by reducing the number of pick ups.

    Just as NV Energy's using smart meters and ending on site reading cut jobs.

    This impacts the economy, not just rate payers. It moves more money into corporation coffers and out of the pockets of wage earners, widening the divide.

    It may seem small, but when you add up all the small adjustments it further weakens the economy bit by bit. Money=Power! Follow the money!