Potential bad news for those who like the city’s curbside recycling program: The bottom apparently is dropping out of the market for recyclables, which could have a big impact on the city’s program. Check out this story about programDs in Oregon, Nevada and West Virginia, which are being crimped by significant market declines for cardboard, plastic, aluminum and scrap metal — basically, everything recycled. I know from sitting through a couple of city briefings that the city currently doesn’t make any money on its recycling program, and in fact was losing a bit even when the market was good. But if the price to purchase recyclables goes to virtually nothing, the cost or the city to continue its recycling collection program will start eating into money tagged for other city programs. With home values and retail sales falling, creating an inevitable and significant drop in tax revenues for the city, could this be just the beginning of major budget shortfalls at city hall?
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