Mayor Rick Fledderman and Aaron Bell, Southeastern Indiana Recycling District executive director, have been working for several years to try to get a recycling center for rural residents in Batesville.
At the April 14 Batesville Board of Works meeting, Fledderman said he’d like the facility to be constructed on the northeast corner of John Street street department property north of the railroad tracks.
The mayor wants to work collectively to raise the funds to build the center, estimated to cost around $50,000. He asked the city council to consider alloting Belterra riverboat revenue-sharing dollars. Funding also could come from SEIRD, Rising Sun Regional Foundation, other grants and donations.
Streetside recycling for Batesville residents will continue. The proposed center will be used by persons who live in rural areas and have been hauling their recyclables to SEIRD-operated Osgood and Brookville facilities. “With us being in the middle, we’re in a greatly underserved area,” he reported.
The city will own the building and the district will pay for startup costs, disposal equipment, utilities, maintenance and a part-time worker.
Bell reported SEIRD leaders discussed opening a center in Batesville because “there’s a good population up here. We know recycling is important” to area citizens. In 2012, city residents recycled 646,480 pounds of materials. That increased by nearly 40 percent to 888,120 pounds the next year, according to him.
Fledderman said Batesville is the district’s second largest recycling community after Madison. Based on the percent of population participating in recycling, “Batesville is leading the pack,” added Bell.
At the proposed center, folks could drop off standard recyclables, such as paper products; plastics, including bags; glass; metals and aluminum; car and rechargeable batteries; fluorescent tubes and bulbs; refrigerators and other refrigerant-bearing appliances; electronics; oil, filters and antifreeze; and used tires. Recyclables would not have to be separated. The only charge is to recycle tires: $1 each for car or pickup, $3 for front and $10 for rear tractor, and $5 for off-rim and $10 for on-rim semi truck. “It costs me $12 apiece to recycle those.”