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Lyon County continues solid waste partnership with Yellow Medicine Co.

MARSHALL — Lyon County will continue to provide services like recycling education and hazardous waste collection in Yellow Medicine County, after county commissioners passed a joint powers agreement Tuesday.

The partnership is one that goes back years between the two counties, said Lyon County Environmental Administrator Roger Schroeder.

“We had the means to help the county out,” he said. Not all counties have a designated administrator to coordinate waste and recycling programs.

Commissioners approved a one-year agreement for 2021, where Lyon County will provide solid waste services to Yellow Medicine County. The Yellow Medicine County commissioners had also approved the agreement at their meeting last week, Schroeder said.

The services outlined in the agreement include providing education on recycling and reducing waste; drafting grant applications; and running collection programs and events for hazardous waste and for certain kinds of waste like tires, appliances, pesticides and lead acid batteries.

Under the agreement, Lyon County provides up to a maximum of 300 hours of service a year, with Yellow Medicine County paying $41.50 per hour for the services, Schroeder said.

“For the last few years, we’ve been riding right at between 160 to 185 hours,” he said. Schroeder said he believed the hourly rate Lyon County was being paid was fair.

Schroeder told commissioners that the Lyon County Environmental Department had considered the possibility of not continuing with the joint powers agreement, because of the workload involved in holding some special collection events. Holding events like city/county cleanup days or collection days for household hazardous waste can take a lot of manpower, Schroeder said.

However, he said last year they made some changes, and more staff from Yellow Medicine County were made available for events like special recycling collections.

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