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Sharps and Medication Disposal

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4/25/2008 12:00 AM

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Tehama County Sharps Collection Program
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Tehama County Sharps Collection Program

Contacts:
Alan Abbs aabbs@tehcoapcd.net
Kristina Miller [recycle@clearwire.net]


The Tehama County Landfill is allocating over $40,000 in funding and staff time for this year alone to work on the sharps problem at some level, which will get us 10 satellite drop-offs and infrequent collection by a third party. This amount almost equates to the annual spending on all other HHW programs, which we have to provide to a county spanning 3,000 square miles. This $40,000 is about $0.70 per capita, and it will only make a slight dent in preventing what will soon be "illegal" disposal- that`s not cost-effective, but it`s the most cost-effective we can be. Those two costs (sharps and hhw) alone are over 25% of our annual available spending for the landfill agency, and after salaries and benefits for the two full-time employees, leaves us with little to address all the other things we`re required to do under AB939. We have no authority with respect to curbside collection contracts, so any money we spend will never be recouped through curbside garbage collection contracts, although we`re essentially providing a service for the residents and businesses utilizing the curbside program.

The biggest help the state will be able to provide is to develop a funding mechanism- an advanced recycling fee, epr, or part of the CIWMB fee you collect would all be acceptable. People who buy medical sharps, companies that make them, or medical facilities that use them should be paying to ensure there are avenues for safe disposal. The HD16 C funding of $7,000 is a start, but it`s only a start. A bit of money here and there can always get moved around, but it comes at a cost- less emphasis on equally worthwhile programs.


Kristina Miller has a very good Powerpoint Presentation on their program.