By Ally Lanasa, Staff Writer
(July 9, 2020) Four recycle cans and 26 trash cans were purchased for Downtown Berlin, according to Economic and Community Director Ivy Wells after the town received a grant through the Main Street Maryland Program.
“We received $10,000 for the purchase of new trash cans and recycle cans for the downtown Main Street designated area and also for the cigarette butt recyclers located on various sign poles throughout downtown which were installed several months ago,” Wells said.
Wells applied for a Main Street Improvement grant from the Department of Housing and Community Development last year because there were not any recycling cans downtown.
“We also have a cigarette butt problem,” she added.
About $1,700 of the grant was allocated to the cigarette butt recycling receptacles.
“We have a volunteer that goes around and collects those butts, and we send them in to a recycling plant for free, and they use them to make benches and other types of items that we can in turn earn points and be able to bring downtown,” Wells said. “It doesn’t cost us anything.”
Wells has contracted a New Jersey recycling company called TerraCycle, which partners with many municipalities to recycle cigarette butts and other hard-to-recycle waste.
The nearly $8,000 remaining went toward new trash cans to replace the existing over 12-year-old trash cans and add recycle cans from Toter. The cans were installed this week.
“Two years ago, we received that same grant to be able to purchase those downtown wayfinding signs that are all over downtown,” Wells said.
Berlin is one of 23 Main Street communities across the state.
As a designated Main Street neighborhood, Berlin can receive state and federal grants and loans, on-site design assistance and specialized training on topics specific to commercial revitalization, according to the Maryland Department of Housing and Community Development website.
“We are always looking for ways to become more ‘green’ and this is just an addition to the variety of initiatives that the town implements to keep us as ‘green’ as possible,” Wells said.
For information, visit berlinmd.gov.