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Entities praised for recycling efforts
County splits recycling grant two ways
rosewood roots and wings foundation

In the 2020 operating budget, the commission allocated $15,000 under Solid Waste for recycling with an understanding that applications would be accepted locally for the money. Eligible are any county department, agency, organization, recycling center, city, school district or community college located in Barton County, said County Administrator Phil Hathcock. 

This year, that grant was for the first time split between to local non-profits that offer recycling services. Rosewood Roots and Wings Foundation and Sunflower Diversified Services will each receive $7,500.

The application had to demonstrate a positive economic and environmental impact in the county, be consistent with the Barton County Solid Waste Management Plan, benefit the county and its residents, and increase recycling. Hathcock said both entities met these requirements.

“Both of these non-profits applied again this year,” Hathcock said. It was a first for Barton County recycling efforts last August. Both long-time county recycling grant recipient Sunflower and recycling newcomer Rosewood Roots and Wings applied for the allocation. 

For years, Sunflower has offered recycling services for household items – paper, plastic, cardboard, etc. Rosewood is focusing on e-waste – electronic waste, such as old computers, monitors (except old-style cathode-ray tubes), televisions, cell phones, etc.

“We continue to work on that,” said RWWF’s Howard Partington of their e-waste efforts. “COVID-19 has complicated things.” 

Even so, “we are trying to expand that program,” he said. It is not a money-maker for the foundation, but it does provide meaningful employment for Rosewood Services clients.

The Barton County Landfill already accepts e-waste at no charge. The county works with a company out of Wichita and hauls loads of collected items there when needed.

Both Partington and Hathcock praised the cooperation on this front.

“They do a good job,” Hathcock said. Rosewood’s efforts save county employees from having to take as many trips.

As for Sunflower, Executive Director Jon Prescott said they are on track to collect over $3 million tons of recyclables this year. They employ 47 of their clients who have an annual payroll of $302,000.

Likely as a result of the pandemic, Prescott said they have seen an increase in recycling, particularly cardboard boxes used in on-line shopping. Glass items, such as bottles, are up as well.

Sunflower has also just started building small buildings for its commercial recycling customers to house their recycling bins. These are being built by Sunflower clients.

“Both of these non-profits are doing a big service for our county,” Commissioner Jennifer Schartz said. All recycling efforts keep items out of the landfill and extend its lifespan.


new deh county sunflower logo

Barton County Commission meeting at a glance

Here is a quick look at what the Barton County Commission did Monday morning:

• Awarded the local solid waste recycling grants to Sunflower Diversified Services and Rosewood Roots and Wings Foundation.

• Ratified the purchase of a pharmacy/laboratory refrigerator for the Health Department.

The Barton County Health Department is in need of an additional fridge for vaccine storage. Department staff researched options and pricing, and due to a current shortage of this equipment, an available Migali EVOx-2RG 44.9 cubic-foot upright unit with two hinged, locking glass doors costing $6,236.90 was ordered, said County Administrator Phil Hathcock.