Changes for Waste District

LISBON – The three-county Solid Waste District that includes Columbiana County is being restructured, with two co-directors being named to replace the departing director.

The decision was made at last week’s meeting of the solid waste district, which consists of the county commissioners from Columbiana, Carroll and Harrison counties.

Director Chris Jacobs is resigning at the end of March to take another job after eight years in charge, and Columbiana County Commissioner Jim Hoppel said they decided to replace him by creating two positions and splitting his duties between them.

Administrative Assistant Barbara Walton was named to one of the positions – director of administration – and recycling/education coordinator Eric Moore was named to the other – director of operations.

Walton will be responsible for preparing reports, contracts and developing and maintaining databases, as well as designing the marketing and advertising programs. Matthews is charged with seeking grants used to fund their programs and will remain responsible for those programs, including recycling education and promotion.

“Both Barb and Eric will be jointly responsible for developing the solid waste plan and recycling programs, developing RFP (request for proposal) specifications and analyzing proposals and meeting with the board and local officials,” Jacobs wrote in an email to the newspaper.

Hoppel said the plan is for Walton and Matthews to continue performing their existing duties while dividing Jacobs’ duties between them.

“I think we have two good people for those positions,” he said, in explaining why they opted to fill the jobs from within.

The board is taking applications for the position of administrative assistant, which was Walton’s old job, to help with the clerical work.

Walton and Matthews will be paid $35,360 per year, and Hoppel said there will be no overall additional cost to the district as a result of the restructuring.

The district’s operates a voluntary recycling program that consists of permanent Dumpster sites where the public can drop off recyclable materials, 30 of which are located in Columbiana County. The districts also host annual and semi-annual events where the public can dispose of household hazardous wastes and electronic devices, appliances, batteries and tires.

The district spent $583,834 last year, compared to $485,000 in 2011, ending 2012 with a record $1 million carry-over balance.

The majority of its funding is from the dumping fee charged landfills that accept garbage from haulers doing business in the three counties, with additional revenue derived from federal and state grants and the recycling program.