- New York Governor Andrew Cuomo has announced that the state will offer $3 million in grants through the Environmental Protection Fund to help municipalities deal with the unexpected costs of their electronic recycling programs.
- Applicants can receive reimbursements for up to 50% of eligible collection and recycling expenses between April 1, 2016 and March 31, 2017.
- The grants will be handled by the New York State Department of Environmental Conservation's (DEC) Household Hazardous Waste State Assistance Program. Further details are available on DEC's website and applications be will be accepted between October 3-31.
Since the beginning of 2015, New York residents have been required to recycle their old TVs, computers, and other e-waste. The state also requires manufacturers to provide "free and convenient recycling" to residents, schools, government entities, and small businesses or not-for-profit organizations.
Yet as reported earlier this year, this system has still placed a burden on municipalities. The high cost of recycling cathode ray tubes, and the fact that some manufacturers are allowed to meet their requirements through mail-back programs, are contributing factors. Areas such as Westchester County anticipate spending more than $1 million this year to keep their e-waste programs running.
Due to similar reasons, electronic recycling programs have proven financially challenging in many parts of the country. Some states, such as North Carolina, have considered ending their programs until a more viable system can be established. Illinois, which banned e-waste from landfills, has also struggled to make their system work but is looking for new solutions. While not ideal, more states may have to follow New York's approach if they hope to keep their e-waste operations afloat.