For the City Times
Recycling Connections Corporation is celebrating 35 years as a nonprofit organization promoting waste reduction and recycling.
The organization was recently recognized through Proclamations by Mayor Mike Wiza and Portage CO. Executive Patty Dreier, both declaring May as Recycling Connections Corporation Month.
The recognition was presented during International Compost Awareness Week (May 1-7, 2016) in consideration of Recycling Connections’ programming that promotes and supports composting.
Recycling Connections is also sponsoring the monthly theme of Reduce, Reuse and Recycling! at the Central Wisconsin Children’s Museum, 1100 Main Street, Stevens Point, WI. Activities at the museum include upcycling art projects and vermi-composting observation.
The organization was first formed in 1981 as a cooperative of member groups such League of Women Voters, Stevens Point Area Co-op, CAP Services, and Izaak Walton League, as well as local service clubs, boy scouts troops and University of Wisconsin-Stevens Point environmental groups. The groups conducted curbside collection programs throughout Stevens Point, as well as helped maintained drop-offs in Stevens Point, Plover, Whiting, Amherst and Rosholt in the early years.
Items collected included aluminum, glass, mixed papers, cardboard, plastics, used motor oil, and vehicle batteries.
In 1983, the organization became a 501(c)(3) organization under the name Intra-State Recycling Corporation (ISRC) and hired its first part-time staff person. Initially all labor was completed manually, however in 1986 equipment began helping the operations. The organization discontinued all curbside collections in 1989, however continued processing recyclables under a contract with the Portage County Solid Waste Management Board.
In 1992 they discontinued processing as well, as Portage County began plans for building and operating their own Material Recovery Facility, which is now located in Plover.
After 1992, ISRC’s focus changed to education and programming and with a broader message that
included waste reduction and composting.
The organization also began working with other municipalities, organizations and state agencies on a wide variety of solid waste management related projects.
In 2004 the organization was again renamed, this time to Recycling Connections Corporation to better reflect their current mission, programs and services.