“The level of funding was reduced this year,” said Chris Schrimpf, press secretary for Georgia Gov. Sonny Perdue.
He said the Hazardous Waste Trust Fund was reduced from $7.6 million to $2.5 million in the amended fiscal year 2009 budget and was reduced from $7.6 million to $6.6 million in the fiscal year 2010 budget. The Solid Waste Trust Fund was reduced from $6 million to $2.1 million in the amended fiscal year 2009 budget and from $6 million to $3 million in the fiscal year 2010 budget. He said every part of the state budget experienced cuts this year and the state prioritized its cuts on causing the fewest negative consequences.
“With the Hazardous Waste Trust Fund and Solid Waste Trust Fund not being funded this year, there won’t be any grant money available through the GEFA (Georgia Environmental Facilities Administration) program,” Griffin Director of Central Services Phill Francis said.
He said grant funds are used to purchase additional containers and equipment. The city received a $24,000 grant in 2008 to buy commercial recycling containers and this year, applied for $51,000 to buy additional residential and commercial recycling containers. Francis does not believe the city will get the $51,000 grant.
“It’ll slow full implementation of the commercial program, which I had envisioned last year,” he said.
He said 65 percent of the businesses in town are recycling. Francis had envisioned every business in the city recycling by the end of June but said without the grant, this will not be possible. He said the city will still be able to attain the goal but it will take more time than he originally planned.
He said he hopes next year, the program will receive more funding and the city will be able to apply for grants.