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City mulling impact of cleanup efforts
Tires make up the biggest portion of cost
Tires waiting to be loaded in to roll-off dumpsters during the citywide cleanup efforts. - photo by Andrew Murphy

The preliminary numbers are in for the City of Great Bend citywide cleanup that ran Sept. 8 through this past Sunday, Sept. 17, at Sunflower Diversified Services facility on West 10th Street. This marked the second year for the effort held in conjunction with Sunflower.

“Everything I’ve got is pretty much approximations at this time,” Public Works Director Jason Cauley said, speaking to the City Council Monday night. Anspaugh Waste Service is still collecting its dumpsters, and there was some dumping still done Monday; those items were taken out to the landfill.

“But for the most part, we’re coming to a conclusion,” he said. There were about 76 total loads total, and these involved 30-cubic-yard and 40-cubic-yard containers.

About eight tons of scrap metal were taken to Acme Scrap Inc. in Great Bend. The city will receive a check for that soon. 

There were 36 loads of tires, he said. “That was our biggest cost.”

This price is still being tallied, but Cauley said the cost for the city to dispose of these went up from $150 per ton to $248 per ton. “We’re going to take a hard look at those tires next year,” City Administrator Brandon Anderson said. “It is kind of one of those necessary evils.”

If the city didn’t offer something for them, the tires would probably end up in a ditch somewhere or who knows what, he said. They are among the worst offenders at providing the environment to breed mosquitoes.

So, if the city continues to accept tires during the cleanup, it may have to charge a minimal disposal fee, Anderson said. They may organize it differently and offer the service throughout the year.

For comparison, last year’s citywide cleanup cost nearly $20,000 but filled 51 construction dumpsters. This included 59 tons of solid waste, almost five tons of mattresses, and 75 tons of tires. 

For reference, that’s about 6,000-7,000 tires at an average of 15-25 pounds per tire and around 100 mattresses at 100 pounds each.