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Motor oil disposal discontinued in Effingham

April 25, 2019
EFFINGHAM — A recent decision by the board of selectmen to discontinue the collection of used motor oil at Effingham's Transfer Station has residents questioning how to dispose of the hazardous substance.

Selectmen decided to shut off oil collection for fear a spill would occur, requiring costly clean-up. The container used to collect the oil was apparently damaged when it was relocated, and also hit by snowplows.

Resident David Strauss told selectmen April 16 that asking residents to drive 10 or 20 miles to a hazardous waste collection site does not seem like a viable option. He added, however, that throwing it on the side of the road or on a selectman's lawn, as he's heard upset and inconvenienced residents suggest, are not viable options either.

"There's only so much responsibility I'm willing to take on everybody's behalf. Grow up, be a steward of the environment and act like an adult," said Selectman Michael Cahalane about those who might choose to dispose of the oil improperly.

Cahalane said he recently attended a workshop where a representative from the Town's insurer, Primex, said the cost to clean up an oil spill is not covered.

Selectman John Meisner downplayed the notion that people will just dump the oil on the side of the road. He said he heard the same thing in the past about furniture and appliances, implying that charging fees to dispose of those items did not cause a spike in roadside dumping.

The annual Household Hazardous Waste Day at Ossipee Town Hall is Aug. 3. Used oil is one item in a long list of hazardous materials accepted at the free event. According to the Town website, Effingham pays an annual fee of $1,629 (the approved 2019 budget is $1,500) to participate in the program.

The annual Effingham Roadside Cleanup is this Saturday, April 26. Volunteers willing to help collect hundreds of bags of trash and piles of other items from the roadsides throughout town are asked to arrive at Effingham Municipal Office between 8 a.m. and 9 a.m. Volunteers will be given grabbers, gloves, vests, trash bags and road assignments. Beyond the satisfaction of a spruced-up town, volunteers will also be treated to a free lunch at noon.

The event is coordinated by the town's Conservation Commission, which also provides a summary of what was found along the roadways.

Mastoran Corp
Garnett Hill
Northern Human Services
Varney Smith Lumber
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