Bring old electronics to the fairgrounds

Published 10:27 am Friday, August 10, 2012

Randy Tuchtenhagen, Solid Waste Officer

The second electronics event collection of the season is nearing and our department has received many calls.

Randy Tuchtenhagen

Electronic devices that contain a cathode ray tube (including flatscreen units) have been banned from landfills in Minnesota, and trash haulers will not put them in their truck. On Sept. 28 our department and 5R Processors will host an organized collection for electronics at the Freeborn County Fairgrounds from 10 a.m. till 2 p.m. If you are unable to attend this collection, contact our office for other disposal options.

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We have made some changes for the fall collection, but there are some things that are still the same. It is important to understand your disposal options. We ask people to follow the signs when they enter the fairgrounds, and we will do our best to keep the lines moving quickly.

In case of bad weather we may funnel vehicles through one of the buildings, causing the lines to move a little slower. Please stay in your car. We don’t want anyone to back up or get run over so please pay attention. With so many vehicles and units to collect, this is a huge event and we cannot tolerate lines blocked or vehicles going the wrong direction.

Some good news for this collection is that we have contracted with a new company from Ladysmith, Wis., to host the event. The company has recently expanded their services to our area, and we have checked on their credibility and collection process to make certain that the items collected are legitimately recycled, reused and handled according to acceptable laws and ethics.

We do not want to be named as a party to a waste site cleanup in future years and we have ensured state licensure is in place. 5R Processors have ISO Certification and MPCA approved vendor status. This company will also provide hard drive cleansing for a $10 per unit fee. A certificate may be issued if requested.

More good news. There is a charge for the large screen televisions, console televisions, broken or partially disassembled screens or computer towers, but there will be no fee charged for the smaller-sized computer monitors, towers, keyboards, speakers, microwave ovens, related wiring, printers, fax machines and small copiers.

In the past we have charged a fee for most items brought for collection but this company does not charge for towers and monitors as long as they have not been damaged or broken. They want the units to be intact, and they do charge a fee for each unit that is not.

This new partnership is a good deal for local businesses and residents to dispose of electronics. Our program is set up for and focuses on helping business and industry dispose of electronics but we have always allowed any county resident to bring items. Disposal of old microwaves has also been difficult in the past and adding them to our acceptable list is a good thing.

There is more information on the Freeborn County web page under the Environmental Services Department. You can also call our number at the Government Center at 507-377-5186.

 Randy Tuchtenhagen is the Freeborn County solid waste officer.