Recycling Updates and TV Recycling Price Increase

From the City of Madison Recycling Coordinator, Bryan Johnson:

TV Recycling Price Increase

Starting January 1, 2017 it will cost $15 to recycle a television at the drop off sites. TV recycling is still mandatory as they are banned from the landfill. Also, we still need residents to bring televisions to the drop off sites.

TVs should not be placed at the curb for collection (there are exceptions – see below). Televisions should not be placed at the curb because if the screen becomes broken, they can release toxic material such as lead into the gutter and into the water system.

We decided to raise the price of televisions from $10 to $15 because we are seeing a substantial number of TVs. Through October 2016, we’ve recycled just over 222 tons of televisions. That’s about equivalent to all of the electronics we recycled in 2015. 

Televisions are easily the most numerous, and heaviest, electronic device we receive to recycle. We expect this high volume of televisions to continue for at least another five years as people continue the transition from bulky cathode ray televisions (CRTs) to modern high-definition ones. When the Streets Division recycles electronics, we pay by the pound, so the high number of big heavy TVs increases our costs.

The good news is that we are only adjusting the price of televisions at this time. And we are not increasing the price of computer monitors – the price increase is just for televisions.

One more important note: after the first of the year, you will need to pay $15 to recycle a television. This means if you buy a $10 sticker to recycle a TV and don’t use it until after January 1, you will need to buy a $5 sticker to meet the new price. 

Don’t Put TVs at the Curb, Except…

There are two exceptions to the rule that people are not supposed to place televisions at the curb. If you need to recycle a projection screen television, or a console television, those can be placed to the curb – with the sticker – on your large item collection day. Those types of TVs are so large and heavy, most people would not be able to bring them into the drop off site. All other televisions, however, should be taken to a drop off site.

Do Not Recycle Drinking Glasses

In my previous group email, the list of recyclables had a mistake. We should not place drinking glasses into the recycling cart. I apologize for the error. We have updated the two-page guide on our website with the corrected information.

Most drinking glasses are tempered, and that type of glass isn’t recyclable in our system currently. Despite the earlier email, do not place drinking glasses into the recycling.

If the glasses you are discarding can be reused, please donate them to one of Madison’s area thrift stores or sell them on, or even post them to your social media networks to see if someone in your neighborhood needs them. 

If they are broken, however, please just place them into the refuse container. No special packaging of the broken glass is required either.

Imagine, Madison

What do you want your city to be in the next ten years? What do you want your city to value in the next twenty, or thirty years? As a city, what should we strive for? These are big conceptual questions, I know. But they are important. 

The City’s Planning Division is undertaking the massive, multi-department task of creating the new comprehensive plan for the city. This new plan will shape the City’s decisions and investments for the next few decades. And you have a chance to have your ideas, hopes, and values reflected in the City’s future. All you have to do is show up and be heard.

The Planning Division has dubbed the comprehensive plan Imagine Madison, and they will be hosting many public sessions to get your input. We need your ideas to be sure that the Imagine Madison document truly reflects who we are, what we value, and what we need our local government to be.

The kickoff event is on December 5 at the Central Library at 5:30pm. Please visit the Imagine Madison website for more information, including information on additional public meetings.

Don’t Forget It’s Winter!

Winter is upon us, Madison, and that brings plenty of changes. We have alternate side parking. We have shortened drop-off site hours. We have that fun double-holiday for Thanksgiving that can make recycling collection a little confusing. And there are two more important things I want to mention.

First, don’t forget to sign up for snow plow updates so you can stay informed with what the Streets Division is doing in response to the winter weather.

And finally, salt. All the salt that we apply on the ground will eventually find its way to our drinking water, so please be Salt Wise this winter. Salt Wise provides useful tips on how to keep the sidewalks safe while not overusing salt.

And feel free to condense and share this information across your social media networks. The Streets Division does not currently have a social media footprint, so any help to sharing this information is greatly appreciated. I know the last email I sent out was shared widely, and I would like to thank everyone who posted, tweeted, or otherwise shared it to help get the news out.

Thanks so much for your time and attention.

Have a Happy and Safe Thanksgiving!