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Federal funding expected to pave the way toward expansion of plastics recycling in Lexington

Lexington Recycle Center 04-22-24
Stu Johnson
Lexington Recycle Center 04-22-24

Lexington’s mayor is proposing some funding go towards catchup maintenance at the Recycle Center. There are also plans to expand the acceptable material list.

Mayor Linda Gorton is suggesting some $700,000 go for heavy traffic pavement upkeep along with addressing water runoff and fencing issues at the center. Angela Poe, in Environmental Quality and Public Works, said a $1.8 million federal grant will expand plastic recycling beyond numbers one and two to include products with a five.

“Things like yogurt containers and sour cream containers and those sorts of items, which, you know people…almost everybody has something that’s number five in their fridge.”

Poe said the recyclable list will hopefully expand sometime next year. She noted the federal grant money will go for equipment upgrades.

“The $1.8 million Swiffer grant is gonna go to optical sorters and robotics and things that are gonna improve our sorting process so that we can have a…produced high-quality enough bails of those types of plastics that somebody will buy them and be able to reuse them,” said Poe.

Poe urged Lexington residents with Rosie recycling containers, when possible, purchase items in an aluminum can over glass. She said that is a much better recyclable material than glass. And Poe noted not every item bought with a recycling symbol on it is currently accepted in Lexington’s program.

Lexington Environmental Quality and Public Works is a financial supporter of WEKU.

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Stu has been reporting for WEKU for more than 35 years. His primary beat is Lexington/Fayette government.
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