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Allentown residents may be required to recycle old electronics

By Len Righi, WFMZ.com Reporter
Published On: Oct 11 2012 09:34:57 AM CDT
Updated On: Oct 11 2012 10:03:04 AM CDT
ALLENTOWN, Pa. -

City residents may soon find that getting rid of their old electronic gear is no longer as simple as leaving it at the curb to be hauled away.

Allentown City Council's public works committee gave a favorable recommendation Wednesday night to a proposed change that would require residents to recycle their televisions, desktop and laptop computers and computer monitors. Council will consider the change at its meeting next week.

The change would bring the city into compliance with a new state law that takes effect on Jan. 24, said Ann E. Saurman, manager of the city's recycling and solid waste center. The goal is to keep such devices out of landfills because they contain hazardous materials, she noted, adding that eventually "anything with a circuit board,"
including cell phones, will have to be recycled.

The state is requiring manufacturers to develop and pay for recycling programs that don't cost the consumer anything, Saurman said.

Another change endorsed by the committee would allow people to keep trash and recycling containers at the front of their property or on their front porch, provided they are clean and sanitary.

Saurman said the change would allow the city's SWEEP officers to address more serious nuisance problems.