County does good work

Published 8:08 am Friday, October 2, 2009

“Reduce, reuse and recycle” is a mantra we all need to try and live by these days, but in Southampton County a fourth “R” word — reward — deserves special recognition.

Solid waste disposal figures released during Monday night’s Board of Supervisors meeting reveal that the county has saved more than $1.2 million since July 2006 by reducing the amount of garbage sent on to the Southeastern Public Service Authority for disposal.

That reduction has been nothing short of dramatic: Southampton sent a monthly average of 1,426 tons of garbage to SPSA during the 2006 fiscal year. During the last fiscal year, that number fell to 792 tons, just slightly more than half of the total sent in fiscal 2006.

While the county has spent $1,003,052 on fences, gates and wages for manning its 16 convenience centers, those measures have brought results: 21,594 fewer tons of garbage have been sent to SPSA — based on tonnage figures from July 2006 — saving $2,247,674 in tipping fees. After subtracting the aforementioned operations and capital improvement costs, the county still came out ahead by $1,244,622.

Very little good news has emerged from the ongoing SPSA saga, but the Southampton County Board of Supervisors should be commended for its forward thinking. Supervisors saved county taxpayers more than a million dollars and clearly have their constituents’ interests at heart.