By Trevor Busch
Town policy allowing for collection by local non-profit groups of refundable beverage containers from bins stationed throughout the community has been suspended due to theft.
Over the past two years, the town has installed 13 new garbage/refundable beverage containers bins throughout the community. There are now 15 bins in total, with one side utilized for garbage and the other side for refundable beverage containers.
In 2016, council adopted a Collection of Refundable Beverage Containers Policy, and the Indomitable Spirit Competition Fundraising Society was awarded the opportunity to collect the beverage containers. The agreement expires at the end of May 2017.
According to administration, feedback received indicates the effort put into the collections endeavour — designed to be a free revenue stream for local non-profit groups — is not worth the outcome, largely due to theft of the beverage containers from the recycle bins.
Ten new containers were awarded to the town in 2017 through a grant, and will come with an exterior device designed to prevent theft.
Administration acknowledged that “although the concept was a good idea, it may not be viable at this time based on feedback from the group.”
The Taber Recreation Board had previously reviewed the issue, and had passed a resolution recommending the town suspend the policy pending further review.
Now that the program has been suspended, staff resources will now be required to empty the containers.
At their April 10 regular meeting, town council voted unanimously to authorize that the Collection of Refundable Beverage Containers Program be suspended pending further review of the program.