Garbage forcing closure of recycling trailers

Published 10:12 am Tuesday, August 18, 2015

At one time, Vicksburg offered six recycling trailers at locations around the community, but because of misuse by some individuals, the only trailer that remains is located at the west end of the Post Plaza parking lot.

“We wanted to be the recyclers for Warren County — instead we are ending up being the garbage [pick up],” said Kearney Waites, executive director of Midd West Recycling.

The Warren County Association for Retarded Citizens — Midd West — offers job training to intellectually disabled adults, and in the early 90s Midd West became involved with recycling.

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“We went into recycling because when NAFTA passed, so much of our packaging and assembly work went away. We figured we would always be able to get the garbage of Warren County and turn that into a training and work opportunity for our people, but I didn’t really want the “garbage” of Warren County. I wanted paper, magazines, paperback books and number one and number two plastics,” Waites said.

The idea was supposed to be a beneficial.

Residents in the community would get recycle trailers and training could be provided to those at Midd West with an end goal of helping disabled citizens find a job.

Unfortunately, a few bad apples have been spoiling a good thing for about a year, Ruby Henderson said.

Henderson is a skills trainer and driver at Midd West.

“It’s pretty bad,” she said.

Recently old car parts were found in the one remaining recycle trailer.

Before the recycling trailers at the new Warren County Court House, Dana Road, Warrenton, Sherman Avenue and Beechwood were closed, Waites said Midd West workers had fished out all kinds of waste including animal carcasses, used tires, dirty diapers, old refrigerators, car seats and household garbage.

There are also safety concerns when people dump their trash — for the Midd West workers and for the public, Waites said.

City Inspection Director Victor Gray-Lewis said the city wants to work with Midd West and find a solution to the problem.

“The beautification committee has received a $50,000 grant from the Mississippi Department of Environmental Quality, and they have the task of looking at how to use the money wisely,” Gray-Lewis said.

“We don’t want to see [the recycling trailers] go away. It is going to take all of us to bring about the awareness of recycling,” Gray-Lewis said.

“The best solution is a central location that people can have a well-lighted area where they can drive up. I don’t care where it is as long as it is lighted, safe and people can walk easily to the containers and park close to them so they don’t have to carry bundles,” Waites said.

Waites also added that it could be helpful if some form of ordinance capable of prosecuting those who lack personal responsibility could be issued.

About Terri Cowart Frazier

Terri Frazier was born in Cleveland. Shortly afterward, the family moved to Vicksburg. She is a part-time reporter at The Vicksburg Post and is the editor of the Vicksburg Living Magazine, which has been awarded First Place by the Mississippi Press Association. She has also been the recipient of a First Place award in the MPA’s Better Newspaper Contest’s editorial division for the “Best Feature Story.”

Terri graduated from Warren Central High School and Mississippi State University where she received a bachelor’s degree in communications with an emphasis in public relations.

Prior to coming to work at The Post a little more than 10 years ago, she did some freelancing at the Jackson Free Press. But for most of her life, she enjoyed being a full-time stay at home mom.

Terri is a member of the Crawford Street United Methodist Church. She is a lifetime member of the Vicksburg Junior Auxiliary and is a past member of the Sampler Antique Club and Town and Country Garden Club. She is married to Dr. Walter Frazier.

“From staying informed with local governmental issues to hearing the stories of its people, a hometown newspaper is vital to a community. I have felt privileged to be part of a dedicated team at The Post throughout my tenure and hope that with theirs and with local support, I will be able to continue to grow and hone in on my skills as I help share the stories in Vicksburg. When asked what I like most about my job, my answer is always ‘the people.’

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