MOUNT VERNON — Keith Bailey, outgoing director of the Delaware-Knox-Marion-Morrow Solid Waste District, met with the Knox County Commissioners on Monday to advise them on the status of a number of facilities and issues before he left the position.
Bailey said the county’s Thayer Road compost facility is in great shape. He said that one-third of the yard waste deposited there this fall has already been shipped out. Bailey gave the commissioners copies of the form which must be submitted to the Environmental Protection Agency each year, as well as filed with the county health department and the solid waste district itself.
“After Dec. 31, someone will have to do an estimate on the amount of green waste not yet ground up,” Bailey said, explaining that he had filled out the form as far as he could up to this point. Through Nov. 30, the amount of yard waste accumulated was estimated at 2,546 tons.
Bailey said the county’s contract for picking up and emptying recycling trailers ends Dec. 31, 2010, but he advised the commissioners to start working on it now. He said recycling trailers which are placed at locations full time aren’t an issue, as an empty one can be dropped off every time the trucking company goes to pick up a full trailer. The part-time trailers, however, are getting more expensive, as most haulers want to charge more for one-way hauling. The county’s part-time trailers are located in Harrison, Liberty, Miller, Monroe and Pike townships. County recycling coordinator Linda Montgomery showed the commissioners a spreadsheet showing the amount of recycling collected at the part-time trailers has increased by almost 60 percent in the last five years.
The county’s recycling center contract with Sims Brothers will be up in April 2011, Bailey said. He said that Sims Brothers, a scrap metal salvage company from Marion, has already informed him it is not interested in renewing the contract at the end of that term, as it has been unable to establish a competitive commercial presence in the Mount Vernon area for non-ferrous metals.
Bailey said he has a number of concerns about equipment at the recycling center that should be addressed with Sims Brothers before the contract expires. He said the clean-burn furnace for disposal of used oil is down and in need of repair. Bailey said there was also an overhead door between the plant and the loading dock that was not in working order.
Bailey added that he also believed a forklift owned by Knox County had been swapped out and replaced with another one. He said he had already addressed these issues with the contractor, and asked the commissioners to follow up in 2010.
In other business, Ron Wells from Knox Community Hospital met with the commissioners and Auditor Jonette Curry about KCH’s Wellness Works Program. The proposal is for a free community-outreach program to manage employee medical needs. Wells said it would refer patients to doctors and clinics within Knox County wherever possible in order to maintain the local market and also to help to keep the hospital’s emergency room from getting overwhelmed at peak times.
In the program, Wells would sit down with departmental supervisors to schedule physicals, drug screens, check-ups and injuries, as well as offering wellness talks, fliers, newsletters and working with the county’s third-party administrator to process insurance claims. Wells said he is already working with the city of Mount Vernon and other large employers in Knox County.
The commissioners expressed an interest in moving forward with the program.
Matthew Kurtz, interim director of Knox County Job & Family Services, also met with the commissioners for his regular meeting to discuss current projects in the works.