‘Blue Box’ pick-ups about to stop

After Wednesday, town residents can put away their “Blue Boxes” for the next two months or so as the contract with the Northwest Ontario Recycling Association expires June 30—and no carrier has been found to take over the service.
“We’re trying to find an agreement with another carrier. The latest offer was just too expensive so we’re still looking,” Mayor Glenn Witherspoon said after Monday night’s council meeting.
“If people want to keep their recyclables and wait, they can, but they must know, the town won’t be picking it up after June 30,” he stressed.
The news was not surprising, though. As first reported in last Thursday’s Daily Bulletin, neither Fort Frances, Dryden, nor Atikokan had received reasonable responses to a request for proposal at a NORA meeting in Dryden.
“The reason for the negative response is there’s no market for the materials we’re recycling,” said Coun. Neil Kabel, who sits on the town’s Operations and Facilities executive committee.
“What’s sad is the province is saying as a municipality over 5,000, we have to recycle,” noted Coun. Dave Bourgeault. “And yet a lot of that stuff ends up in a landfill in the end [because it can’t be sold].”
Coun. Kabel said the Operations and Facilities executive committee continues to look into pursuing a solution of its own, with a deal with a company in Koochiching County, Mn. a possibility.
No further details on that are available at this time.
CAO Bill Naturkach said residents shouldn’t bother to stock up their recyclables given the indefinite date as to when recycling service might be restored here.
Glass still can be dropped off at the bins outside the Public Works building on Fifth Street East since the town recycles this itself by grinding it into asphalt.
In other business at Monday night’s meeting, council:
•agreed to amend zoning bylaw No. 8/98, thereby declaring 1127-1133 Scott St. a residential Type 3 zone and allowing Jim McKinnon to build a “fourplex dwelling” there (this followed a public meeting at which no one showed up to oppose the rezoning);
•referred a petition to make repairs to Elizabeth Street East from resident Stanley Hoard to the Operation and Facilities executive committee (his complaint about launch fees at the Sorting Gap Marina also was referred to the waterfront development committee);
•passed a bylaw to authorize the levying and collection of a special charge of taxes to the Business improvement Area (this is to be paid by members in July and August, brining in a total of $45,000 for the BIA);
•passed a bylaw authorizing the entering into of a lease agreement with Canadian Wilderness Outposts Ltd. at the Fort Frances Municipal Airport; and
•passed a bylaw authorizing an agreement with CIBC to provide for direct deposit of payroll.