Ocean Township considers sharing recycling center

Staff Writer

OCEAN TOWNSHIP — With the advent of the newly opened Ocean Township Recycling Center, municipal officials may be meeting with those in neighboring towns regarding sharing recycling services.

Township Manager Andrew Brannen said during a Jan. 7 Township Council workshop meeting that he plans to meet with officials from Allenhurst, Interlaken, Loch Arbour and Deal regarding sharing the services of the drop-off center on Sunset Avenue.

“We had an initial meeting because the county wanted us to, and some of the towns seemed receptive to it,” he said.

“We are going to have a discussion with them. The question is how are they going to contribute financially to the operational costs.”

Construction of the new center was funded by a $150,000 Monmouth County grant. Brannen said one of the stipulations of the grant is that the township would attempt to facilitate shared services with neighboring communities.

He said it is not yet known whether other towns would be charged based on usage or population.

The Ocean Township Recycling Center opened last fall, giving residents the opportunity to drop off glass, paper, plastic, cardboard, concrete, yard waste, electronic waste (e-waste) and appliances at the center.

Prior to the construction of the new center, residents were able to drop off recycling items at the Department of Public Works yard, which is located adjacent to the recycling site.

However, Brannen said because the existing public works yard has other uses, residents were forced to navigate around large sanitation trucks and other vehicles entering and exiting the facility.

The recycling center is often used as a drop-off point for items that either the township does not collect curbside or that residents would find difficult to fit into the recycling receptacles.

Brannen said the drop-off center has been popular with residents in recent months.

“The bulk [recycling] probably gets more use than we want it to, but it has to end up somewhere,” he said. “I think what is probably going to happen with the bulk is we are going to collect less curbside, and people are just going to take it directly to the center.

“We are going to pay for it one way or the other; they just are going to get rid of it quicker.”

Councilman William Garofalo also said the township looks cleaner because there are fewer items being left curbside.

With the success of the new center, Mayor Christopher Siciliano said there might be a time when additional drop-off centers can be constructed in other parts of town.

“I like it so much [that] down the road I’d like to see three of them, one in each corner of town,” he said. “Imagine in Oakhurst how well that would work with our summer guests and college students.”