The Township of Toms River has received a $183,933.00 grant from the New Jersey Department of Environmental Protection to help implement and further enhance recycling efforts.

The recycling grant program is funded by a $3 per-ton surcharge on trash disposed at solid waste facilities across the state, according to Toms River administrators.

The grant program rewards local governments and enhances recycling efforts through initiatives such as funding a recycling coordinator position, sponsoring household hazardous waste collection events, providing recycling receptacles, implementing curbside recycling pickup programs and maintaining leaf composting operations.

Municipalities were awarded these grants based on their 2016 recycling performance and awarded through the state's Recycling Enhancement Act.

In all, the state DEP awarded $14,300,000.00 in state grants this year.

Toms River's municipal grant is the highest in Ocean County.

"Our recycling program continues to be a win-win and grants like this allow the Township to continue its work so we can become even better stewards of the environment," Mayor Tom Kelaher said. "Not only do we receive grant money from the state, but the Township also saves money in transportation and tipping fees avoiding the need to send trash to the Ocean County landfill. "

In 2016, New Jersey generated 22,600,000 tons of solid waste, which includes municipal waste plus construction debris and other types of non-municipal waste.

Of the total collected, 13,900,000 tons were recycled and 8,700,000 tons were disposed, for an overall recycling rate of 61 percent.

"The single stream recycling program has been a great improvement to the town's recycling efforts," Lou Amoruso, director of Toms River Public Works said. "The quality of the recyclable material collected curbside is of paramount importance. The public's assistance in maintaining the high quality of recyclables is critical in order to maximize its value to processing plants where it is converted into raw materials used in manufacturing. The residents can assist us by ensuring that recyclables are clean and free of plastic or bags when placed curbside for collection."

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