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Indiana asked to reinstate recycling fund

Keywords: Tags  Indiana Recycling Coalition, Carey Hamilton, Beth Schmitt, Nucor, Alcoa, OmniSource, Sims Recycling Solutions, Lisa Gordon

PITTSBURGH — The Indiana Recycling Coalition (IRC) has requested that the state fully reinstate its dedicated recycling fund.

The State Solid Waste Management Fund was established in 1990 and funded by a 50-cent-per-ton fee on landfill waste. The state froze some 90 percent of its monies during a 2009 budget crisis.

Before the funds were frozen in 2009, $2.8 million was allocated for recycling efforts, including $1.3 million to support community collection programs and $1.4 million to support private-sector recycling infrastructure investments. The group is seeking $3.4 million this year.

"It is time to bring back these important grant funds, which are designed to invest in Indiana’s recycling infrastructure," IRC executive director Carey Hamilton said. "From grants to Indiana’s manufacturers for processing equipment or to community collection, investing these dollars will result in significant economic activity."

Coalition members include Nucor Steel-Crawfordsville, Crawfordsville, Ind.; OmniSource Corp., Fort Wayne, Ind.; and Sims Recycling Solutions, Chicago, according to the group’s website.

In addition, Pittsburgh-based Alcoa Inc. has come out in favor of the effort. "Alcoa strongly supports this request," director of recycling Beth Schmitt said. "We believe that new investments in recycling programs and infrastructure will result in higher aluminum recycling rates which, in turn, will save energy, save resources and create jobs."

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