Isle of Wight to look at options for alternative convenience center schedules

Published 3:17 pm Wednesday, March 2, 2016

By Matt Leonard

Staff Writer

Isle of Wight County officials are considering changing convenience center hours to make locations more, well, convenient.

Currently, the eight centers all have different hours, except for weekends, when they’re all open for 12 hours on Saturday and six hours on Sunday.

Newport District Supervisor William McCarty said the confusing hours at the county dumps were a recurring complaint when he was campaigning for his position.

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“You know what,” McCarty said at a work session on Monday, “They’re right. They (the hours) are confusing.” {mprestriction ids=”1,2,3,4,5,6″}

The hours were changed in 2014 due to budgetary constraints. Before the change, all eight centers were open 12 hours a day, which was an annual cost of $394,736. With the new hours the cost is $238,853.

McCarty’s alternative plan is to have the centers open from noon until 7 p.m. every day. This plan is estimated to cost $229,948.

The public works department staff determined the current hours after an analysis of site visits and tonnage at the different locations.

Tony Wilson, director of public works, said the centers would have to be open more than seven hours on Saturday – the busiest day.

Wilson said they would try to pull together a few different alternative schedules for the Board of Supervisors to consider, but said no schedule will alleviate all issues.

“You’re going to have those complaints regardless,” he said. “Not everyone is going to be satisfied.”

Any new convenience center schedule would be included as an item in the proposed budget this spring, according to Interim County Administrator Sanford “Sandy” Wanner.

The public works department is also looking into how the county can decrease incidents of illegal dumping.

The convenience centers are only available for county residents, so they’re considering tags or more publicly displayed listings at the centers to help dissuade nonresidents from using the centers.  

Correction: An earlier version of this article said the cost of McCarty’s plan could be $299,948, the actual estimated cost is $229,948. {/mprestriction}