CLEVELAND (WJW) – The FOX 8 I-Team has found the City of Cleveland will miss yet another target for starting a new recycling program.

City hall recently predicted it would finally start a new program this month, but we’ve learned it has been delayed again.

Two years ago, the I-Team exposed a city hall secret. City crews have been taking all recycling collected in Cleveland and dumping it in a landfill. Our reporting sparked city leaders to work to create a new recycling program.

While plans have moved forward and nearly 30,000 residents have signed up to take part, the actual start date keeps getting pushed back.⠀

We investigated what’s going on after residents sent us video of crews emptying blue recycling containers into the same truck used for trash.

On the west side, David Napier wondered why his recycling is still going to a landfill.

He recorded video of one of those crews and said, “And then he goes over here and he picks up both cans of my neighbors and that’s when I started videoing.”

He spoke about waiting for the new recycling program to start, saying, “I thought it was going to be here a lot sooner than it has been since I signed up months ago. When I saw trucks go down the streets just picking up both cans at the same time, it was so disheartening.”

In February, Cleveland’s new recycling coordinator spoke of the start of the new program by telling us,
“Looking at April. We could tie it into Earth Day and around then. I think that’d be a fine time.”

Last month, the city administration spoke about it at a council hearing and said, “The goal line with our new recycling program is April 18. That is Earth Week.”

Yet, the program will not start this month.

The latest big hold up has been hiring a private company to haul away all of the recycling collected by city crews. The mayor’s office told us this week that the city has just approved a company needed for this.

So, we asked once again, when will the new program finally start?

We found the new start date has still not been set for certain. The mayor’s office told us it could be in May or it could be in early summer.

Back in the Napier household, there’s not much patience left. David and his wife try to recycle as much as they can, but then they see what they saw this week. Crews still take away recycling and trash altogether.

David Napier added, “But then to see that, it’s like, why bother?”

While the city has had tens of thousands of people sign up to take part, many other people have told the I-Team they will also take part once they see the new program up and running.