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Farmington wants recycling feedback

City survey seeks opinions on where recycling bins are needed

Michelle Leonard

Staff writer

Do you recycle? Use city parks or facilities? If so, the city of Farmington wants to hear from you.

The city of Farmington is taking a look at when, where and how residents recycle when they’re out and about in the community. The idea, municipal services coordinator Lena Larson said, is to find out what the challenges and priorities are for recycling, then come up with a plan to meet future recycling needs.

Farmington is conducting the survey in partnership with Dakota County’s recycling initiative. Farmington’s recycling program is tied in with the county’s. The overall goal is to enhance recycling opportunities for residents. Through the connection, Farmington could be eligible to receive funding from Dakota County to acquire new recycling containers.

The survey is online, and it only asks three questions. Two of the questions require short, write-in answers. Those ask where recycling containers should be added, and how the city could improve recycling at its facilities.

The city has recycling bins at all of its facilities, in several parks, and along trails. Larson said the survey will help the city to know if there are more, or better, locations for recycling receptacles.

“We will be evaluating the parks and trails to see the number of containers we have, that kind they area, if people use them when they see them, and so on,” Larson said. “We feel people who do recycle like to recycle wherever they are and it’s not always that easy.”

Responses have been slow to come so far, she said. But those that have come in have been positive.

There are still a lot of recyclable materials winding up in garbage cans, Larson said. By adding more recycling options around the community, the city hopes to increase the amount being recycled, and decrease the amount of garbage in landfills.

“Wherever there’s a garbage can, there should be a recycling receptacle next to it so you have that choice,” she said. “We’re really interested in seeing if that’s something that’s important for people. From what I’m hearing, (recycling receptacles) are being used. We just want to make sure we’re doing the best job we can.”

Under the current recycling contract, the number of cardboard recycling receptacles decreased to five, all of which are located on city property. Larson has gotten some feedback that recycling is less convenient than it was in the past. She understands the concern, but said that residents have the opportunity to recycle cardboard as part of their bi-weekly collection. The cardboard should be cut down to three-foot pieces and stacked alongside the recycling bin.

The survey is located on the city’s website, A “Recycling Survey” link is posted on the right side of the home page, under the City Surveys column. The survey will be available until April 11.

Michelle Leonard

Michelle Leonard joined the Woodbury Bulletin staff in November, 2014, after 14 years covering news for the Bulletin's sister publication, the Farmington Rosemount Independent Town Pages.  Michelle earned her Bachelor of Science degree in Mass Communications: News-Editorial from Mankato State University in 1991. She is an active member of the American Legion Auxiliary Clifford Larson Unit 189 of Farmington, and served as the 2014-15 Third District President to the American Legion Auxiliary Department of Minnesota. Michelle is also the volunteer coordinator for the Minnesota Newspaper Museum which is open annually during the Minnesota State Fair. She has earned Minnesota Newspaper Association awards in Investigative Reporting, Local News Coverage, Feature Photography and Column Writing. 

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