Oakland folks will have to get used to a different recycling pickup day starting Aug. 1, when Waste Management shifts from Friday to Wednesday. Garbage pickup will remain on Fridays, and yard waste will continue to be picked up on Wednesdays.
Waste Management acquired the previous collector, Advanced Disposal, in October. Representatives asked for the change in days at the June 22 Oakland Town Commission meeting because it would make pickup more efficient with the increased number of homes on the route. It also addresses concerns residents have had about the haulers combining trash and recycling.
Waste Management will send postcards out notifying residents of the change.
The company has a program called Recycle Often Recycle Right to simplify what can and cannot be recycled. Clean bottles, cans, paper and cardboard can be recycled; food and liquid should be kept out of the recycling; and loose plastic bags and bagged recyclables are not accepted.
Detailed information is available on the Waste Management website, wm.com/recycleright; information flyers also will be available at Oakland Town Hall.
OAKLAND NATURE PRESERVE
Jennifer Hunt, managing director of the Oakland Nature Preserve, presented an annual report to the commission, thanking the town for its commitment to the preserve during the pandemic.
Education is one of the primary goals of ONP, and in a typical year students frequent the preserve through school field trips and various camps. For most of 2020 and the first half of 2021, the COVID-19 pandemic kept students away from the preserve, so educators made weekly visits to Oakland Avenue Charter School to continue the relationship, Hunt said.
An outreach was established at Dillard Street Elementary School, as well.
There was a focus on adult education courses in the past year, and seven Florida Master Naturalist Certification courses were offered via Zoom. Hunt said 143 adults participated in the online class.
Despite there being no official sign-ins during the pandemic, she said, the preserve experienced an increase in preserve guests who were looking for something to do outdoors. Volunteers have showed up, too, providing about 6,000 hours restoring the preserve, working as museum docents, and providing office and data entry work.
Hunt reported on current funding and announced two major projects. The West Orange Healthcare District funded the renovation of the Healthy West Orange Boardwalk, and private foundations are paying for additions to the porch and bathroom.
Scouts have played an important role at the preserve, she said, and several boy scout and girl scout projects have popped up around the preserve.
IN OTHER NEWS
• Town Manager Steve Koontz announced a meeting July 8 with residents to update them about the septic-to-sewer process. The town has received $1.7 million in grant monies for the major project.
“We’ve got this project funded, and I think we’re going to be able to cover the costs of all those residents, not just the low to moderate income,” he said.
The town currently handles its wastewater through septic tanks and drain fields; some of them were installed as early as the 1950s.
By building a centralized sewer system in the town, Oakland will be able to create more than 5,000 jobs and bring more economic opportunities to the town.
• The commission approved a drainage agreement with the Oakland Pointe Homeowners Association. Commissioner Rick Polland recused himself from the vote because he lives in the neighborhood.
• Commissioners passed three public hearings pertaining to the annexation, Comp Plan amendment and industrial rezoning of the 6.65-acre Cra-Mar Groves Inc. property south of West Colonial Drive for mini-warehouse development in the future.