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Simpsonville ends curbside recycling, says 'significant portion' already goes to landfill

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Simpsonville clock tower - Feb. 2021

Simpsonville's clock tower, Simpsonville, S.C.

Simpsonville will no longer offer curbside recycling to residents as of September.

City Council voted unanimously at its April 13 meeting to end the service in order to "protect taxpayer money from an inefficient practice," according to a statement from the city. 

A "significant portion" of the items recycled by residents go to landfills because of contamination and improper sorting, the statement said. The service costs the city an average of $4,500 a month. Before the end of 2019, Pratt Recycling paid the city about $3,000 a year to accept recyclables, according to city spokesman Justin Campbell. 

In lieu of the service, the city's public works department will start a program to educate residents about alternatives, proper recycling habits and the impact of reducing and reusing.

“Recycling is not just about what it costs, but the inefficiency of curbside recycling is just not sustainable,” Mayor Paul Shewmaker said of the change. “We must be good stewards of the environment as well as good stewards of the taxpayers' money."

Follow Conor Hughes on Twitter at @ConorJHughes.

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