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For the week of  October 3 - 9, 2001


Recycling to begin (finally) at Ketchum post office

Express Staff Writer

More than two months after the new Ketchum post office opened, newspapers and catalogs are scheduled to start being recycled there this week.

A trash container photographed Friday behind the Ketchum post office contains not only trash, but catalogs, newspapers and junk mail intended for recycling. Express photo by Greg Moore

Because of a delay in contracting with a recycling pickup service, materials deposited by patrons in the recycling bins have not been getting recycled—they’ve been thrown in the trash.

Bins in the lobby were marked for recycled materials in late August. However, Postmaster John McDonald said he has spent the time since then trying to line up a local company called Recycling Services to pick up the materials. Wood River Rubbish had been doing that job at the old post office, but McDonald said he wanted to give the business to the smaller company.

He said the company did not return his phone calls and he did not learn until last week that it couldn’t do the work. However, Recycling Services co-owner Tiffany Landrum said she informed the post office’s maintenance manager two weeks ago that her company did not have the equipment to take on the job.

Last Friday afternoon, a Mountain Express reporter talked to a post office janitor about the recycling and photographed the recycled materials dumped in the trash container behind the building.

Mike Inman, operations manager for Wood River Rubbish, said he received a phone call on Monday morning from the post office’s maintenance manager asking the company to put five pickup bins for glossy paper and two for newspaper behind the building.

"He called me this morning three times," Inman said. "I told him I’d get them there and he wanted to know where they were at, where they were at. I told him I’d just shut down shop right now and make him the number-one priority and I’ll get them there."

Inman said the recycling service will cost the post office $18 a month, and that his company makes no profit on recycling.

"It’s basically a community service," he said.

The Idaho Mountain Express is distributed free to residents and guests throughout the Sun Valley, Idaho resort area community. Subscribers to the Idaho Mountain Express will read these stories and others in this week's issue.