Kevin McCallum, THE PRESS DEMOCRAT
Recycling Guides for Sonoma and Marin Counties.
Here’s a quick recycling quiz:
Which of the following items are appropriate to put in local blue recycling bins?
A. Pizza boxes
B. Clean shredded paper
C. Consolidated plastic bags
D. Coffee cup tops bearing a triangular recyclable symbol
The correct answer is: None of above.
Sonoma County’s dominant waste hauler is struggling to clean up its single-stream recycling program, and it’s tightening the rules on what is — and what is not — recyclable material.
For years North Bay Corp. has been hesitant to enforce recycling guidelines, urging residents to err on the side of recycling, said Lou Ratto, chief operating officer for the Ratto Group of Companies, parent company of the Santa Rosa garbage hauler.
“Five years ago, we told people if you don’t know whether it’s recyclable, put it in the recycling bin,” Ratto said. “Now, if you don’t know whether it’s recyclable, put it in the garbage.”
The company is under strict orders to get the amount of garbage in its recycling stream — known as residuals — below 10 percent, the maximum it is allowed to have under state law at its Santa Rosa recycling facilities on Standish Avenue.