Monday, July 17, 2006 | 7:15 a.m.
The current three recycling bins, when filled, weigh in at about 60 pounds. They are heavy and awkward to carry by hand. Separating them into three bins still results in individual bin weights as much as 40 pounds and triples the number of trips to the curb.
The recycling company is asking people, many elderly, some with bad backs or other frailties, to tote these heavy and awkward bins to the curb. Part of the year this must be done in temperatures above 100 degrees. It just doesn't seem that the current process is designed to encourage recycling.
If the company is really interested in recycling and not just in reducing the number of trips its vehicles must make to each residence, I propose that it trade the three bins for a wheel-mounted single-use container and leave the scheduled pickup of recyclable and other waste as it is.
The single container would make it considerably easier for an individual to collect recyclable material without the bother of separating it into bins. And the wheels would help in the effort to tote the load to the curb. I believe this upgrade of collection bins could be done without opening the contract to other bidders, who may be willing to do all of the collection and disposal at a lower rate.
To protect the public interest, a new competitive bid contract would be required if the company wants to change the contract terms by reducing waste collection days.
Charles R. Parrish, Las Vegas