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Free voucher system allows Covington residents to drop off bulk trash at city transfer station

A new voucher system that goes into effect tomorrow will allow Covington residents to drop off yard waste, bulk items like furniture, and a limited number of tires for free at the Covington transfer station.

The program is the newest step in the City’s ongoing efforts to work with Rumpke Waste and Recycling to improve the effectiveness of waste collection and keep Covington and its sidewalks clean.

“Our goal is simple: Make Covington cleaner,” said Sheila Fields, who manages the City’s Solid Waste and Recycling Division. “With the voucher program, we’re doing two things: addressing residents’ concerns and making it easier for them to use the transfer station, and trying to head off a problem – too often old furniture and tires are illegally dumped or left for the City to manage.”

The new voucher system aims to make city’s waste collection more effective (NKyTribune file)

Rumpke assumed operation and management of the transfer station at 4399 Boron Ave. in July 2020 and has been working with the City to create more drop-off opportunities for residents. That station is open for drop-offs 8 a.m.-4 p.m. Monday-Friday and 8 a.m.-noon Saturday.

The voucher program is geared toward residents and not commercial rehabbers or companies, such as roofers wanting to drop off shingles from a job site or junk haulers, Fields noted. Those users would continue to use the weight scales at the transfer station and pay according to weight.

How it works

Obtaining free vouchers:

• Residents can pick up one voucher a month on a first-come, first-served basis at City Hall at 20 West Pike St.
• They first must contact the Solid Waste & Recycling Division at 859-292-4417.
• They will need a valid ID with a Covington address.
• Pickup hours are 9 a.m.-3 p.m., Tuesdays and Thursdays.

To redeem a voucher:

• Simply present voucher and an ID to the scale attendant at the transfer station.
• Attendants will examine the load.
• Residents can use up to two vouchers per visit.
• The vouchers expire every six months (the end of the fiscal year June 30 and the end of the calendar year Dec. 31). The expiration dates enable the City to gauge the success of the pilot program and to build its cost into the budget.

Limitations on waste:

• What’s allowed: Yard waste, bags of trash, bulky items such as furniture and rolls of carpet, and up to four tires, off the rim.
• What’s not allowed: Appliances with Freon, metals, construction debris like rock and dirt, batteries, electronics, chemicals and other liquids.
• Size limits: Small trailers are acceptable, but they can’t be more than 8 feet long. Transfer station attendants have the right to reject voucher use for loads that are unusually large. (For example, while a normal-sized pickup truck is fine, a box truck or a pickup with high staked sides would be subject to normal charges rather than the free voucher program.)

Residents who drop off mattresses and upholstered furniture don’t have to wrap those in plastic, like they do when putting those bulk items at the curb for pickup.

Fields said she encouraged residents to “recycle” bulk items where possible, such as donating useable furniture and housewares to charitable organizations and thrift stores and taking leftover and salvageable construction material to places like Building Value in Cincinnati.

From City of Covington

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