The village mayors will be receiving part of their Recycling Revolving Fund (RRF) allotments in December.
The $500,000 allotment is part of the $1.3 million appropriated by the Legislature for the mayors for this current fiscal year.
The RRF was intended to augment the Abandoned Vehicle and Streetlight Fund which were deemed insufficient for funding junk car and trash removal at the village level.
MCOG Executive Director Angel Sablan said the release will be done in three phases. The first phase is just for abandoned vehicles and tires. Phase Two will be for loose metals and white goods. Phase 3 is for collecting green waste and electronics.
The early release of the funds would allow the mayors to start their abandoned vehicle collection program earlier than usual. Each village has an appropriation of $25,000 for this phase.
“This is a year-round program. This is the first time that we started early. Usually, it is March, June, or July when we start and we can’t finish the funds. This time, we are getting $500,000 to start with and we are going to come back in a meeting in December and release the remaining amounts of money,” Sablan said.
He added that this year, it would cost more to turn over the abandoned vehicles to the three available recyclers on island. The cost has gone up from $150 to $250 per vehicle simply because the recyclers had to strip off the vehicle before sending them to the metal processing centers.
“We really have no choice. All three vendors have the same price and if we don’t agree to the same price, they are not going to take the vehicle. It is going to sit where it is at right now,” Sablan said.
Sablan says the council is still looking at other options to reduce the cost of hauling the abandoned vehicles out of the villages.