BELMAR, NJ — After receiving one proposal with a triple-digit hike in recycling costs over five years, Belmar is looking to bring curbside collection in-house.

DeLisa Demolition Inc., the Tinton Falls-based company that currently has the borough’s recycling contract, was the sole bidder for a new five-year contract, submitting a proposal for $1.1 million — climbing nearly 193 percent from the current $377,688 pact.

At its November 6 meeting, the Belmar Council will vote on whether to reject that bid and instead have the borough’s Department of Public Works take over recycling collection in 2020, according to Business Administrator Edward Kirschenbaum.

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“In talking with (Public Works director Michael Campbell), we think that it will be prudent to handle recycling in house,” Kirschenbaum said. “He is confident we can do it with the staff and equipment we have.”

Public Works personnel will be reassigned to handle curbside collection, which will continue on Wednesdays, he said, adding that the borough will utilize two municipal-owned garbage trucks and its small fleet of trash scooters.

However, the borough will evaluate the current collection schedule to determine whether adjustments may be needed, depending on factors that include the time of year.

Based on annual costs of $42,000 for tonnage of glass, aluminum cans, tin, paper, cardboard and newspaper and for vehicle maintenance, Kirschenbaum said the borough is projected to spend about $210,000 over the five-year period — resulting in a total savings of $845,000 based on the nixed bid submitted by DeLisa.

The borough’s recyclables will be brought to Monmouth County Reclamation Center in Tinton Falls for disposal.

Meanwhile, DeLisa will continue to provide regular garbage service to Belmar’s nearly 3,500 residential dwellings, 170 commercial establishments, schools, churches and borough locations.  It inked a $1.29 million, five-year contract this past January for garbage services with the borough.

READ MORE: Belmar Turns Over Garbage Contract to DeLisa Waste Services

Municipalities across the United States can blame China for escalating recycling costs. China is the destination for most of America’s recyclables. So in January 2018 when that country placed a ban on imports of various types of plastic and paper, and tightened its standards on what materials it would accept, it placed the entire recycling industry in a state of uncertainty.

And now those changes continue to ripple through the country, as states, counties and municipalities are struggling with how to address the issue, without having to place the burden on skyrocketing recycling costs on the public.

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