Goshen beautifies by recycling electronics

Published: May. 10, 2017 at 4:15 PM EDT
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If you throw out an old TV or computer, chances are it could have some hazardous parts in it.

That's why Goshen is trying to steer people away from throwing them out, helping to beautify and keep Goshen clean.

All you have to do is pull up to the Street Department with a drivers license that has a Goshen address. The attendant there will hep you get whatever electronics you need to the right pile. In the first half of the week-long program, they've already got quite a bit going on.

"40 yard trash hoppers, we've already had 5 of them taken out of here," Assistant Commissioner Larry Brown said."I've got two more that are ready to go...We've taken two dump trucks out of here because Monday morning, it was just everywhere."

That's the culmination of the waste in general. Out of that, two dump trucks and one of those trash hoppers were just filled with TV's, which come with a small drop off fee.

"It's $10 per TV. Which is what they charge us," Brown said.

That fee can get pretty large. Last year, they had 737 TV's they had to take in. That comes out to almost $7,500.

Taxpayer money is going toward that $10 fee with each TV turned in. A lot of electronics have materials, like gold, inside the motherboard. So that goes toward offsetting a little bit of the cost. Unfortunately, it really doesn't add up to much.

"It didn't make that much of a difference last year," Brown said. "If you look at my electronics thing, it's only about a third full. So we really don't get all that much electronics as we get a bunch of TV's here."

Most of those TV's are going to be useless and are just another cost. Thankfully, some newer sets add a little to the payback pile.

"Absolutely none unless they're flat screens," Brown said. "I guess there's a little bit of precious metal in flat screens. Not much, but a little bit."

Even in the age of flat screens, they're still halfway to where they were last year on CRT TV's.

"We still keep getting them," Brown said. "We've probably gotten at least 200 to 300 this year already."

And they're already halfway through the week. After that, there's no more help until next year.

"Not that I won't find it on the curb out there somewhere later on," Brown said. "But that's just Goshen. That's what it is."

Just so you don't get the wrong idea, they do not do curb pick up. You'll need to bring your TV to the Street Department.

After Saturday, you can take your electronics to Recycle Works or the Elkhart County Landfill. That's where the Street Department has been taking the material.

If you take your TV there, you'll most likely end up with the $10 drop-off fee. So now is the time to get rid of the old electronics if you're in Goshen.

Other cities can drop off electronics at recycling centers in their area. Those centers could also have a drop-off fee.

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