During the years we were trying to build support to hold our first HHW event, Cayuga County staff found 100% grant funding to hold a similar event, an agricultural chemical collection event known as a Clean Sweep. So, the County's first hazardous waste event was not the 1997 HHW day, but our 1996 Clean Sweep event. After successfully implementing Clean Sweep 1996, the County Legislature authorized the local contribution to hold our first HHW event the following year.
Since 1997, the County Legislature has authorized the County's Solid Waste Management Program Office to regularly apply for 50% New York State assistance to conduct these programs. In all, Cayuga County has received over $200,000 in New York State grant funds to conduct its household hazardous waste collections and generally has matched the State dollars one for one.
The County has also received assistance from federal sources, the City of Auburn and NUCOR Steel to make these collection programs available to the public.
Cayuga County has also co-sponsored and/or supported other events for hazardous materials and/or hazardous chemicals, such as the New York State Department of Environmental Clean Sweeps of agricultural and school chemicals in 2005 and 2009, and, the City of Auburn Police and Kinney's Drug Stores prescription drug and medicine collections that began in 2010.
After holding HHW events every other fall for four years, the County decided to try a spring Earth Week event in 2002 (EW02). The special targets for that event were all of the propane grill tanks that became obsolete starting April 1, 2002 due to fire safety issues. The County has partnered with NUCOR Auburn to also collect Freon appliances beginning in 2008.
In all, we've safely removed over 2000 drums of chemicals, over 1.2 million pounds of electronics and over 6000 propane tanks from our community.
The County's Solid Waste Management Program Office also coordinates recycling of electronics and chemical disposal from County agencies. These activities have recycled an additional 100,000 pounds of electronics and numerous drums of hazardous materials.
In addition to our HHW events, we have also sponsored recycling events, particularly for tires. These fourteen events have safely removed over 77,500 tires and over 1000 pounds of lead from our community and our environment: