State Awards Recycling Grants To Union County Communities

TRENTON – Municipalities in Union County will receive more than $513,000 in state grants to help implement and enhance local recycling efforts, Department of Environmental Protection Commissioner Bob Martin announced today.

The funds are being awarded through the Recycling Enhancement Act, which has significantly increased recycling tonnage grants the DEP is able to distribute to almost all of the state’s cities and towns. Statewide, $13.1 million in state grants will be distributed to municipalities.

“Recycling is a high priority of the Christie Administration because it improves our environment while also creating tangible, economic benefits for municipalities,” said Martin. “As we observe the 25th anniversary of the state’s Mandatory Recycling Act this year, a landmark law that made New Jersey the first state to require recycling, we are making a call to action across the state for everyone to renew their commitment to recycle.”

Grant awards to Union County include: Berkeley Heights, $11,765; Clark, $14,338; Cranford, $22,976; Elizabeth, $72,788; Fanwood, $12,509; Garwood, $7,879; Hillside, $17,919; Kenilworth, $16,158; Linden, $53,511; Mountainside, $7,941; New Providence, $19,155; Plainfield, $19,297; Rahway, $24,712; Roselle, $12,974; Roselle Park, $9,505; Scotch Plains, $29,776; Springfield, $28,153; Summit, $33,248; Union, $63,380; Westfield, $34,123; Winfield, $1,308.

The recycling grant program is funded by a $3 per ton surcharge on trash disposed at solid waste facilities. Distribution of grant funds this year is based on the recycling successes local governments demonstrated in 2010. In 2010, New Jersey reached a 40-percent municipal solid waste or MSW recycling rate for the first time since 1998.

Municipal governments, vital to the overall success of recycling, receive 60 percent of the money the fund generates to help them enhance recycling outreach and compliance efforts. The balance is awarded to county solid-waste management and household hazardous-waste collection programs, county and state promotional efforts, and recycling research.

New Jersey became the first state to require statewide recycling in 1987 with passage of the Statewide Mandatory Source Separation and Recycling Act. Municipal Solid Waste, collected from households and small commercial establishments, include paper, corrugated paper, glass, metal containers and plastics.

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