Recycling bin abuse leaves Rohlfs hot both figuratively and literally

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[June 17, 2014]     Send a link to a friend  Share

Pictures by Nila Smith

The Logan County Joint Solid Waste Agency provides recycling services throughout the county including recycling bins located on the city lots on North Kickapoo Street across from Latham Park. The bins are marked with directions of what can go into each of the two large roll-off dumpsters.

Monday, within just a few minutes of a new dumpster being dropped off, some uncaring party decided to use the paper recycling bin as a place to discard their trash.


 Mitzi Rohlfs is the director of the LCJSWA and the only paid employee. Her duties are not supposed to include climbing inside these bins and picking up disgusting trash, but that is what she found herself doing.

I have to clean it up, she said. It costs $350 to have these bins changed out, and we cant afford to do that for something like this. She added that with the trash in the bin, the paper that does go in there cannot be used, so she also cant just leave it there.

One of the sad parts of this is that many of the items deposited could have been recycled if it had been cleaned up a little bit and put in the proper dumpster. For example, the leaves and corn cobs and other potting soil waste in this container is not recyclable, but the container it was in is.

So are the flower posts she found, but not with the dirt in them.


Rohlfs said she felt confident she had only missed these violators by a few minutes, but if and when she catches them, she will take action on them. We file police reports, she said, and we can take action when we catch them.

She recalled one time, she actually did figure out who the violator was, and she called them and told them to come and get their garbage. She said their response was OH! Someone must have stolen our garbage!


The one nice part about this, Rohlfs said, is that once she gets all this trash out of the bin, the city of Lincoln will come and help her get it hauled to a proper dumpster.

But in the meantime, on a day where the temperature was nearly 100-degrees inside the dumpster, Mitzi summarized her mood saying, Im hot! Both figuratively and literally!


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