Newspaper article Charleston Gazette Mail

KANAWHA COUNTY ; Waste Authority Struggles with Profitability Plan

Newspaper article Charleston Gazette Mail

KANAWHA COUNTY ; Waste Authority Struggles with Profitability Plan

Article excerpt

The Kanawha County Solid Waste Authority is, once again, struggling to find a way to become profitable. James Young, the executive director of the Solid Waste Authority, had been hoping to get a low interest loan from the Solid Waste Authority Board to purchase a building that would provide space to process recyclables, until he found out that the loan required a feasibility study from an accountant.

The study would cost money that the Solid Waste Authority - which had been flirting with bankruptcy until it got $25,000 from the Kanawha County Commission in February - doesn't have.

"We thought this loan program was going to lead to something, Young said. "But this has thrown a wrench in it.

In order to move forward in the effort to stop losing money, the Solid Waste Authority has a couple of options: It can lease a building and sell the current Slack Street location to have money to pay a deposit, it could take out a loan from a bank at a high interest rate or it can try to work with the drop site as is.

The consensus among the majority of the Solid Waste Authority Board members who were at the meeting Tuesday was to look into selling the Slack Street property so the authority could lease a new building.

Having a building would allow the Solid Waste Authority to start making a profit faster. The authority would be able to store equipment inside and work toward getting the two largest cities in Kanawha, Charleston and South Charleston, to keep their recyclables in the county rather than ship them to Beckley.

The board also suggested that Young look into getting a three- phase electrical system installed at Slack Street.

The electrical system would allow the authority to operate a recycling baler. With that machine, the authority would be able to process plastics and mixed papers in-house, instead of having to pay to have them processed at West Virginia Cashin Recyclables in Nitro.

But for the baler to work, the authority would have to purchase a small structure, similar to a carport, to keep the machine dry.

If the authority is able to lease the building it was hoping to purchase, it would be able to skip the Slack Street expenses, as the building would already have three-phase power and a roof. …

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