The City of Hamilton plans to restart its central composting facility next week.
General manager of Public Works, Dan McKinnon, provided that update while presenting his department’s annual budget on Tuesday at Hamilton City Hall.
He says the composting plant should be fully operational again by March.
The composting plant has been closed since last June because of odour issues that have prompted the installation of carbon filters.
As a result of the closure, leaf and yard waste have temporarily not been accepted in Hamilton’s green carts.
McKinnon says Hamilton’s waste diversion rate fell to 34 per cent last year, from roughly 50 per cent in previous years, in part because of the composting facility closure.
He adds that the closure of the Chinese market to certain recyclables, including black plastics and styrofoam, also cut into waste diversion efforts and cost the city $2.4 million in lost recycling revenue.
McKinnon is also suggesting that we are heading into another nasty pothole season in Hamilton.
He tells city councillors that if the temperature fluctuations of recent weeks continue, “we may have a difficult second half of February and early March,” in regards to road conditions. Potholes are created when the asphalt is loosened by warmer temperatures and frozen again during cold snaps.
The preliminary 2019 public works operating budget request includes an increase of 4.6 per cent or $10.6 million, which includes an increase of $9.2 million for transit.
A major rehabilitation project on Locke Street, resurfacing of the Red Hill Valley Parkway, implementation of year seven of the 10-year Emerald Ash Borer program and year two of the Gypsy Moth Control Program are some of this year’s other major initiatives.
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