RICHMOND, Va. (WRIC) — The Central Virginia Waste Management Authority is apologizing to its residents after delaying and temporarily canceling recycling collection.
In an apology to customers sent out on Monday, the company, which serves 275,000 homes, said they are struggling to hire and retain drivers and helpers on trucks. On top of that, they are continuing to deal with COVID-19 outbreaks and exposures.
The company also apologized for communication challenges, saying their system is not “designed for the significant number of calls and emails we are receiving currently.” They are currently working on adjusting their system to answer the calls and messages in a timely manner.
In the meantime, residents can get updates via www.cvwma.com, Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.
Recycle bins were still overflowing in some Richmond neighborhoods Tuesday. Roger Levasseur said he noticed the items put in his recycle bin a week ago were still there.
“I was pretty surprised to see today that my container was still full. I thought surely it would’ve been emptied,” he said.
Kim Hynes, the Executive Director of the Authority, said the pandemic ramped up the industry’s worker shortage.
“We did have to cancel one whole day of collection, so they had to wait an extra two weeks which is unfortunate,” she said. “We never want to have to do that, but it just became physically impossible for us to be able to fit it in.”
The Authority now says its contractors are aggressively hiring more workers and getting them trained.
“We’re getting there, it’s just taking longer than we had hoped,” said Hynes.
But as more time passes, residents are wondering what to do with their recyclables in the meantime.
“I feel like somebody should be able to take care of that,” said Levasseur. “You still want the bin empty so you can continue doing what you do.”