The Jackson Township Recycling Center has been keeping the township green for more than three decades.
Recycling is serious business in this township.
The Jackson Township Recycle Station on Wales Avenue serves hundreds of cars daily and collected more than 3.7 million pounds of recycled material last year.
The Station, which opened in Jackson in 1982, is associated with the Stark-Tuscarawas-Wayne Solid Waste Management District.
“We've been here a long time and we're well-established and the people in the township and surrounding areas have been good recyclers,” said Steve DeJane was named station manager earlier this year after seven years with the recycling center.
Last year, DeJane said township residents collected 800,000 pounds of newspaper, 501,000 pounds of corrugated cardboard and 10,000 pounds of Styrofoam.
“There are only three recycle centers like this one in the state with a drive-up facility,” DeJane said. “We collect items and then we ship them out. We don't do any processing here.”
The recycled items are shipped to a variety of locations. Plastics go to North Carolina, cardboard goes to a new paper mill in Niagara Falls, N.Y. and glass items go to a company in Cleveland.
The center employs six full-time employees and uses community service and volunteers for a lot of the work. DeJane said the center averages 350 hours of community service hours a month for a savings of $3,000 in labor costs.
“We have some great partnerships in the county including working with Goodwill and Creative Rehab. We also have a great relationship with the Jackson Township Trustees,” DeJane said. “The center is a non-profit organization and we are not affiliated with the township but we help each other out.”
The township does the snow plowing at the center and in return, the center takes their old tires for recycling. The center pays for itself when it sells the recycled materials.
“On average, we see 420 vehicles a day during the week and up to 600 on Saturday. We fill a tractor trailer with 9,000 pounds of crushed cans every six weeks and ship those to Anheuser-Busch who buys the cans from us,” DeJane said.
Companies that need to shred paper can do so at the recycling center at a cost of 25 cents per pound. Customers are also permitted to watch as the documents are shredded.
“We're really appreciative of the community for their continued support,” DeJane said. “We survive on volume so the more the community recycles the better we do.”