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Grant helps put dent into tire problem

"A step in the right direction." That is the way local officials have described a tire collection effort now under way throughout the county.

The Lawrence-Scioto County Solid Waste District received a $48,000

United States Department of Agriculture grant this year to pay for the disposal of scrap tires in 30 townships within the district.

The money pays for the cost of disposal. Municipal Court community service workers are helping collect the old tires. Their work serves as an in-kind match for the federal monies.

Already, 1,000 tires have been collected from Elizabeth Township within the last two weeks. That was considerably more than what township trustee Roy Mullins was anticipating.

"I was expecting 500 or 600, but once we got started we just kept finding them. They were on township roads where people would just go and dump them over a hill. We'd find a pile and then go 100 yards or so and find a couple more. Judge (O. Clark) Collins (Jr.) was good to let us have some workers to help us," Mullins said.

"It's a good start, truly it is," Ironton Municipal Court Judge O. Clark Collins said of the Elizabeth Township success. "I know we have problems with scrap tires in some areas but this is a good start."

Lawrence-Scioto County Solid Waste District Coordinator Chuck Yaniko said some township trustees have advised him that scrap tires do not present a large problem in their areas and they do not need to take part. Others, such as Upper Township, were happy for the help.

Jerry Rowe, who is both a community service supervisor and an Upper Township trustee, said the tire collection effort is a win-win situation for all concerned.

"We've gotten in the neighborhood of a couple hundred (in Upper Township)," he said. "These guys (community service workers) don't care to work. I think our township is larger than Elizabeth. But we've gotten a start on it."

Yaniko said the tires are being taken to a facility in Cincinnati to be recycled, making a good effort even better.

"It's not like we're taking them to some landfill to pile up. They're going to be turning them into chipped rubber products and asphalt," Yaniko said.