"We have outgrown our recycling," Hardy Mayor Nina Thornton told the council at the March 24 meeting.
Thornton sent each of the alderman a picture of the condition of the recycling pro-tainer, which was overly full. Not only was the pro-tainer full, but there was recyclables piled around it on all sides.
Thornton told the city that they pay Tri-County Recycling as well as collect recyclables, but only one or the other is required. "I am glad they are recycling, but it is piled," Thornton said.
She told the council that it takes two men, every eight days, around two hours to take the pro-tainer to the recycling plant and empty it. The cost of doing this is about $100 per trip, which was not budgeted.
Alderman Bobby Gilliland said he would like to see the pro-tainer removed from Hardy. But, Alderman Margaret Harness expressed her feelings against that action.
Harness said she had called Sarah Sexton with White River Planning and Development in Batesville to ask if she had any insight on this situation. According to Harness, Sexton suggested several ways to help with the overflow of recyclables.
Harness said per her request at the last council meeting, a sign has been ordered to tell people to sort their recyclables, which she said she feels will help the overflow. Sexton also suggested placing the pro-tainer where it can be better watched at all times, which was not received well by the rest of the council.
Harness said Sexton's biggest suggestion to help is to educate the public about recycling and what their options are. Harness said there may be grant money available to do so.
Gilliland said he felt like the city is funding another corporation (Tri County Recycling) which is illegal. He said he would like to research the issue further. Thornton tabled the discussion and said it will be on the next meeting's agenda.
Sally Grable of the Hardy Garden Club told the council that the Garden Club will be hosting a lunch on April 11.
The dinner will be from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. and feature live music as well as a silent auction. Grable said the auction has more than 50 items for men and women.
Tickets for the lunch will be $6 for adults and $3 for children at the door. Advance tickets are available from any Garden Club member and can be purchased at a discounted rate.
Thornton told the council that Jaysson Funckhouser of the U.S. Department of Internal Geological Service (USGS) requested that Hardy pay for the utilities related to the river gauge that is placed under the Wilburn Brothers bridge.
The River Gauge is set up to alert Thornton and/or Hardy Chief of Police Ernie Rose if the river starts to rise too quickly, which in turn allows them to have more time to react and keep the residents of Hardy safe.
Since Thornton has been mayor, she has worked hard to bring Hardy into compliance with flood plain laws and regulations. She was chosen as Flood Plain Manager of the Year in 2008 for the work she has done in the area.
The USGS is asking for $1,000 per year for the upkeep and utility costs of the river gauge. "I think that is a minor expense for what good it (the river gauge) does for the community," Rose said. "We use it almost weekly (to check the water levels)."
"It is very little to ask to save lives, plus they repair it for us," Alderman Gilliland said. The council unanimously voted to pay the $1,000 per year fee.
During their meeting March 16, the Quad Cities Rotary Club donated $500 to the city of Hardy to help with the disasters that have hit in the past year.
Thornton told the council that she sent the Rotary Club a letter of appreciation for the donation. She also suggested that the money be used to pay half of the $1,000 fee for the river gauge this year.
The council agreed that the river gauge would be great use of the money.
After adjourning, the council along with those who attended the meeting were welcomed for refreshments to celebrate the open house for the newly remodeled City Hall building.
The counters in the break room were lined with mountainous pies, fresh fruit and homemade candies. Everyone enjoyed a snack while discussing the improvements made to the building.