Trash Disposal Topic of League of Women Voters Meeting - NBC29 WVIR Charlottesville, VA News, Sports and Weather

Trash Disposal Topic of League of Women Voters Meeting

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Trash talk took center stage at a community dialogue meeting in Albemarle County Tuesday. The conversation focused on where to put and what to do with solid waste.

The League of Women Voters of the Charlottesville Area brought the controversial topic to the table. Their goal was to give people a better background on the options available when it comes to what we all throw out.

“We need a paradigm shift of how we think about trash,” said one of the panelists, John Martin. “We need to stop thinking about it as trash, and thinking about it as a resource.”

For the past 17 years, Martin has kept tabs on how Charlottesville and Albemarle County handle trash.

“It's up to the public to express its will that the public wants a plan and wants to end this day-to-day mess,” he said.

Martin spoke to the crowd at Tuesday's League of Women Voters meeting on the community's water supply plan and whether the solid waste process is better off public or private.

“There is lots of room for private sector involvement in this whole process because what we're dealing with here is a resource that private sector can take advantage of and money can be made from it, but you can't privatize government,” Martin said.

This session comes on the heels of a big decision by Albemarle County supervisors last month to extend their contract with the Ivy landfill. That vote temporarily took plans for trash convenience centers off the table.

“We're very excited about the new board at the county level, and that maybe this is an opportunity to finally look at a real waste management and recycling plan for this county and this region,” said Teri Kent, another panelist and founder of the environmentally conscious nonprofit Better World Betty.

The panelists say it is a quality of life issue we need to make a priority.

“It's something that any civilized society takes care of, and we just need a plan going forward into the future to do it in an affordable way and in an efficient way,” Martin said.

A handful of Albemarle County supervisors and Charlottesville City councilors were also at Tuesday's event. The League of Women Voters hopes people were able to take away tips to make informed decisions in the future.

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