So now we know!

Under terms of the contract, the company Green for Life is never required to recycle anything at the High Prairie Recycling Centre.

Never! Not only glass, but paper, plastics and cardboard! Did you know that?

Last week, I asked the Town of High Prairie if paper and plastics was being recycled. I also asked for proof including delivery dates, destination and tonnage recycled.

First, it is insulting that I was asked to prove recycling was not occurring. The Town of High Prairie is providing a service and it is up to them to prove they are providing the service. That is the way it is done in the real business world.

How would you feel if you went sent a bill and were told to pay it but the service provider did not have to prove the product or service was being provided? That is what the Town of High Prairie is doing.

Here is Town CAO Bill McKennan’s response in its entirety.

“Residents have been notified that glass recycling was discontinued and the bins were removed some time ago.

“All recyclable materials under contract continue to be recycled (newspaper, mixed paper, cardboard, metal cans, milk containers, deposit containers, containers labelled #1 and #2).

“The contract is for the number of bins, not the tonnage hauled. The Town does not receive any funding related to the resale of materials and once removed from the site is the property of (Green For Life). Thus, the statistical data is not available.

“The contractor may landfill recyclables based on market conditions. The contractor shall notify the Town as soon as practicable.

“Council sets service levels it is administration responsibilities to manage these contracts Not council’s (this is clearly set out in the Municipal Government Act). It appears who have a varying option however the MGA overrides individual assumptions and wishes. Administration also relates concerns related to service levels to council and annually during budget deliberations.

“Administration will be reviewing the labelling of bins and other matters with the contractor to provide a better understanding for the ratepayers. We will ensure any changes to service levels are communicated out.”

Really! Two major issues here.

“The contractor may landfill recyclables based on market conditions. The contractor shall notify the Town as soon as practicable.”

So, at any time Green For Life does have to recycle anything at the centre. Citizens were never told this and the clause does not exactly inspire confidence anything is being recycled. Yet the clause virtually guarantees Green For Life can do nothing wrong. It is a very one-sided contract in their favour.

Second, Green for Life is not responding to exactly when glass recycling stopped. Only when council invited Green for Life to a meeting last year did they finally admit glass was not being recycled. How long before that citizens do not know. Council does not know because they can’t answer the question. Councillor James Waikle said at two meetings glass early in 2022 recycling was not occurring when he was previously on council over one term ago.

Green for Life also did not respond when asked if paper and plastics is being recycled. We can only wonder why.

In the meantime, citizens are asked to continue paying the recycling bill. The fact there is no proof the service is being provided should be raising alarm bells.

Turns out it doesn’t matter. Legally, Green For Life is not required to recycle.

It would have been nice if the Town of High Prairie told us that!

The High Prairie Recycling Centre? Until it is shown to citizens that recycling is occurring we have every right to believe it is nothing more than a trash collection site.

By Chris Clegg

June 9, 2023 

This item copyrighted by / South Peace News   High Prairie, Alberta

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