Payson residents are better read than town officials realized, and with demand exceeding bin space, the town's new newspaper recycling program is literally bursting at the seams.
The jumbo-sized recycling bins the town has placed at Wal-Mart and Green Valley Park are quickly filling to capacity, prompting town officials to post signs asking residents to come back later or take their newspapers, junk mail, and other acceptable paper items to an overflow bin behind the water department building at Town Hall.
When the bins are full, Public Works Director Buzz Walker said, Weyerhaeuser Recycling, the Phoenix company the town contracts with, has to be notified to schedule a pickup.
"It usually takes them a couple of days to get up here, so that can create an overflow situation," Walker said.
The bin behind the water department building was placed there primarily for use by town employees, Walker said. "It also serves as an overflow bin when the bins at Green Valley and Wal-Mart are full," he said.
"It isn't open to the public at all times because we don't have a backup bin for it, and since it's not in a paved area, public access isn't the greatest."
Walker said he's amazed at the community's response to the newspaper recycling program so far, and so, he said, are Weyerhaeuser officials.
"Nobody anticipated this kind of volume," he said. "We appreciate the support this effort is getting from residents, and we are responding to make it work more efficiently as fast as we can.
"We'd much rather have this situation, than having the bins just sitting there taking up space."
Walker said he's ordered one more large bin to help accommodate community demand.
"Since the large bins are expensive about $5,000 apiece we're also going to talk to Weyerhaeuser about donating some smaller, open-top bins for the Town Hall complex," Walker said. "That way we can free up the large one there for use someplace else."
Newspaper receptacles are located at the parks and recreation office parking lot south of the big lake at Green Valley Park, and at the northeast corner of the Wal-Mart Supercenter parking lot.
For more information, call the Town of Payson at 474-5242.