Waste reduction, recycling grants available to businesses, organizations

OREGON — The Ogle County Solid Waste Management Department is announcing that limited funds remain available for the last round of Waste Reduction/Recycling Grants.
The grants of up to $2,000 are available to Ogle County businesses, schools, churches and non-profit organizations wishing to establish or improve on waste reduction and recycling programs and services. Applicants must provide a minimum 20 percent match of the total project cost.
Total grant funds remaining for this year are around $5,700, so grants will be awarded on a competitive basis in amounts from $100 to $2,000.  The deadline for submittal of applications for this round is 4 p.m. on Thursday, Sept. 5.  
The application for the grants is simple and flexible. Businesses could use grant funds to help purchase waste reduction and recycling materials and equipment such as collection bins, carts, balers and storage containers. Equipment needed to switch from disposable packaging to reusable packaging for products and supplies could also be considered. Businesses are encouraged to consider projects to reduce food waste or implement food waste recycling programs.
Schools may seek funds for special projects that will further a student’s understanding of how to reduce the amount of trash sent to the landfill. The requests may be for materials and equipment, such as recycling bins/carts, videos, books, worm (vermicomposting) bins, composters, or other waste reduction equipment.
Municipalities or haulers seeking to improve commercial, curbside, or multifamily recycling programs are encouraged to apply. Grant applications for equipment and materials needed to improve electronics recycling options in Ogle County are also encouraged.
These examples are not all inclusive and applicants are encouraged to find innovative ways to reduce waste and increase what is recycled. The grants may not be used to pay for ongoing expenses such as staffing, collection, and hauling costs. Priority will be given to new applicants.
All applications will be reviewed by the Ogle County Solid Waste Management Department and the Ogle County Board Solid Waste Committee. Grants will be evaluated based on the following criteria: management ability; project quality; project impact; realistic goals and expectations; accuracy of application; education potential; use of recycled content products when available; potential for waste stream diversion; and future continuity of project.  
In 2017, Ogle County residents, businesses and other entities recycled approximately 31 percent of the municipal waste generated in the County. This recycling rate is due to the efforts of many individuals doing their part to reduce waste and recycle as much as possible at home, work and school. The OCSWMD urges businesses and other organizations to strive to find new ways to increase what gets recycled in the County. These grants can help make that possible.
For more information or to request an application, please contact the Ogle County Solid Waste Management Department at 815-732-4020, or visit www.oglecounty.org


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