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Combined Efforts Ensure Continued Success of Household Hazardous Waste Day Collection

September 27, 2011

Combined Efforts Ensure Continued Success of Household Hazardous Waste Day Collection

By Martha Clarvoe, Special Projects Manager

Otsego County Conservation Association

The Household Hazardous Waste Day collection on Saturday, September 17 marked the 14th anniversary of this very successful annual event. Household Hazardous Waste Day is run by the Otsego County Department of Solid Waste & Recycling under the supervision of Planning Department Director Terry Bliss, with assistance from his wonderful staff: Karen Sullivan, senior planner; Psalm Wyckoff, planner; Meghan Lottridge, secretary; and Jody Taylor, director of weights and measures.

As always, everything went off without a hitch. The process of checking in, proceeding through the line, dropping off automobile batteries, spent propane tanks, pharmaceuticals for disposal, chemicals, compact and long outdated fluorescent tubes, and hundreds of gallons of latex paint for recycling took approximately five minutes per vehicle and driver. (Please note: Electronic items are now accepted at both MOSA transfer stations at no charge.)

According to the early totals, 1,045 gallons of latex paint were collected for reuse. This paint will now be reprocessed by Golden Artist Colors, Inc. and given away in the near future through the Otsego County Department of Solid Waste and Recycling. Also collected were 990 gallons of flammable liquids, 935 gallons of pesticide liquids, 220 gallons of corrosive base liquids, 330 gallons of antifreeze, and four pallets of compact fluorescent and fluorescent bulbs.

Rich McCaffery, who has volunteered for this event every year since its inception, said, “This is such a rewarding endeavor as a volunteer. So many residents are truly appreciative of this opportunity and take the time to say so as they exit. They comment on the efficiency and how easy and painless the process is, and can’t express enough appreciation for jobs well executed.”

Since 1998, OCCA has helped recruit volunteers for Household Hazardous Waste Day. Many of these volunteers have participated in 10 or more of these collections, selflessly giving up from 3-1/2 to 7-1/2 hours of their precious Saturdays. We are very grateful for the invaluable help these dedicated volunteers provide. Without their assistance, the wait would be much longer and the process not nearly as seamless.

OCCA wishes to thank Terry Bliss and his staff for a job well done, and extends our thanks also to all those who helped out this year – Wendy Burton, Andrée Conklin, Deb Dalton, Sandy deRosa, Jean Finch, Maria Graham, Paula Greene, Cindy Hill, Jim Hill, Dottie Hudson, Dick Kelly, Jim Kidd, David LaDuke, Stephen Lopilato, Ed Lentz, Vicky Lentz, Carol Malz, Herb Marx, Rich McCaffery, Paul Mendelsohn, Jeff O’Handley, Nancy Potter, Bill Ralston, Linda Rowinski, John Saphier, and Lynn Wassel.

And with assistance from Linda Drake of SUNY-Oneonta’s Center for Social Responsibility and Community, OCCA was also fortunate to enlist the help of Oneonta Job Corps volunteers. Thanks also to Giovanny Ayala, Alex Cokely, Christopher Dodd, Kareem Garcia, Gabrielle Jammel, Corey Miller, Krystyl Pantoja, Germayne Session, and Scott Stanton.

If you would like to receive information about volunteering at the Household Hazardous Waste Day collection next year, please contact me at martha.clarvoe. Many hands lighten the load!

Otsego County’s oldest environmental conservation association, OCCA is a private, non-profit environmental membership organization dedicated to promoting the appreciation and sustainable use of Otsego County’s natural resources through education, advocacy, resource management, research, and planning. For more information on OCCA, or to donate, call (607) 547-4488 or visit

Cutline for Bill Ralston’s picture: Bill Ralston, faithful OCCA volunteer, wears a T-shirt created by Teresa Winchester in 2000.

Cutline for Stephen Lopilato’s picture: Stephen Lopilato heard of this event while he was in town visiting family. He made the T-shirt the night before.

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