Organization proposes hazardous waste collection for Limestone County

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ATHENS, Ala. - You might be storing old paint, gasoline, or expired cleaning products in your garage. But it may not be because you're hoarding, you just don't know what to do with them.

The Executive Coordinator of Keep Athens-Limestone Beautiful said she had a very necessary proposal at the most recent Limestone County Commission meeting: To create an event that would allow residents to properly dispose of hazardous materials.

"We haven't had one since 2008," Lynne Hart explained. "That is the first and only household hazardous waste collection that we have had for Limestone County residents."

Hart said she conducted an anonymous survey in which people let the organization know what they were really doing with their old hazardous items.

"I found out that people were dumping it in ditches, pouring it down drains, burning it and most people are stockpiling it in their garages, their barns, their sheds."

Morgan County provides monthly hazardous collection. Madison County offers collection five days a week at a new drive-thru facility.

"I know that Limestone County is not in a position to do that but we do need to have more than one every ten years," Hart added.

She said it's very expensive to do a collection and recognizes that as one reason it hasn't been done in over a decade.

"I am requesting $25,000 from the county and I will be approaching the City of Athens in hopes that they can contribute $10,000," Hart explained.

She said that money will cover the total cost of the collection event, including funding the collection professionals necessary.

Hart believes if the proposal is approved, the collection program will impact the environment tremendously.

But she said that's only if the collections take place regularly.