41,000 Rolling Recycle Carts In Naperville

It seems like every time Naperville city officials get money from somewhere, it costs Naperville residents more money. It happened again last July, when the city received a $900,000 grant from the State of Illinois intended to help pay for a new recycling facility expected to cost about $1.2 million. The key word is ‘expected’ since these types of things always end up costing more.

The State of Illinois is basically broke, but keeps giving more money away, while the City of Naperville acts as an enabler by taking money the State doesn’t have, to build things that aren’t really needed. Again, it’s a classic example of Naperville focusing on unnecessary wants versus needs. Sooner or later city officials will be doing a money grab for the world’s largest puppet theatre; another first for Naperville.

If you’re going to have a recycling center, you’d better have all your residents recycling, since you surely don’t want to be second to Aurora, Bolingbrook, or Joliet. That means Naperville is on the hook for slightly less than $2 million worth of rolling recycle carts (about 41,000 carts). When Naperville is on the hook, that means residents are the bait. It appears the plan is to bill residents about $4 month for nine to twelve months to offset the cost of the carts. It will be buried somewhere on your monthly electric, water, and refuse bill, similar to all those fees on your telephone bills.

City officials say residents will not be forced to purchase the carts, however knowing how government works, one would imagine that in time, residents could be fined for tossing paper and plastic into their garbage cans, making the cost of the cart more appealing.

Residents will have a choice of 32, 65, or the Buick-size 95 gallon carts. For me personally, the question is, where do I put it if I get one. Last weekend I cleaned out and re-organized my garage to the point it looks like the Container Store; I have no where to put it, other than outside (Naper-tucky), or move a car out of the garage and into the driveway, which defeats the purpose of a garage.

The cool thing about the carts, other than having wheels, is that they have lids, so on those windy days, papers won’t be flying through the air. But there is no way I’d have enough recyclables to fill even the 32 gallon Fiat-size container.

Upon further thought, it might have been more fiscally prudent for Naperville to decline the grant, thereby letting the State keep the money it doesn’t have, not build the recycling center (let Bolingbrook do it), and not squeeze more dollars out of Naperville residents.

As for the 41,000 rolling carts, they could be used for a contest during the Last Fling, something similiar to the ‘Wife Carrying World Championships’ in Finland, except the rolling carts would be filled with kegs of beer and raced to the beer tents.



Show 3 Comments


  1. Mike Thommes

    I agree with a lot of your comments. I think the majority of Naperville residents are into recycling, but it could always be better. I too wonder where I would put even a 32 gal receptacle in my garage. ( I wrote to Public Works asking if the three proposed sized carts could be on display so homeowners could check them out…never got a response.) I now use nested containers that take minimal space. As far as a new recycling center, once you sit in line for an hour on a Saturday morning at the Brookdale location waiting to drop off some used oil and old gardening chemicals, you’ll beg for a speedier solution! And I’d love to see them take Styrofoam which now takes up a lot of space in landfills and never breaks down. And it’s an excellent reuse material! Perhaps they could have some arrangement with Dart Container Company to provide another recycling path for this material.

  2. Otto-my-wallet

    CON can’t run an Electric Company, as they must borrow up to $19M from the Water Utility just to stave off bankruptcy. They approved a dreadful contract with IMEA, which, with the smart meter fiasco has created about a $20M negative cash flow. They couldn’t run Green Energy Biofuel fiasco, yet somehow they think they are savvy enough to run a Recycling Center, competing with private business. The problem is that their “venture capital” comes from money confiscated from citizens through taxes. Worse yet, the money is coming from a bankrupt state, with the third highest unemployment rate in the country, and a bond rating worse than Iraq. Forcing homeowners to buy recycling carts, to support their business model is the equivalent of Home Depot billing each homeowner, on our utility bill, for 5 yard waste bags, whether they need them or not. Naperville needs to stop fulling their entrepreneur fantasies, stop competing with tax generating business and just manage essential city services.

  3. Gerard H Schilling

    Can we buy a recycling cart for our city council members who vote for this stuff? They could be tied into the electric charging stations that will sit idly by and serve like those who only stand and wait. Twice a month they could be stimulated to wake up and attend what is usually a two tooth pick (to hold their eye lids open) multi-hour, self congratulatory, back slapping session called council meeting.

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