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Recycling site could be dumped

Philadelphia’s Partnership Recycling drop-off center on 12th Street in the parking lot just south of Wharton Street is scheduled to close. The first-Saturday-of-the-month event ceased operations this month and will not accept any recyclables after Sept. 7, according to program coordinator Bob Pierson.

The center lost its sponsor after the YouthBuild Charter School moved away from South Philadelphia. YouthBuild’s other site on the third Saturday of the month at 619 Catharine St. also will close.

The community-based recycling effort was started in the late 1980s by the South Philadelphia Environmental Action Coalition and has given residents a place to recycle their plastics and mixed paper for more than a decade. But in recent years, the site was hurting for helpers.

"An active drop-off location needs several dozen volunteers to take turns managing the site, to keep it tidy and to educate recyclers about the materials accepted," Pierson explained.

In recent months, city crews have found plastics mixed with paper and many non-recyclable items left at the site. Neighbors have complained about the condition of the site after the city trucks hauled the piles away, Pierson said.

"The only way we can keep this site open is if we get a list of at least 20 people who have formed a recycling committee and who each pledge to volunteer about eight hours a year tending the site. This is a long-term commitment," said Pierson. "It is a pity to close this site because it is the only place in South Philadelphia where people can recycle plastics and cardboard."

Other community groups with good participation in the Partnership Recycling Program earn thousands of dollars for community good works from city incentives and sale of the mixed paper.

Residents are urged to recycle their plastics and mixed paper at other sites in the Partnership Recycling Program. The closest ones to South Philadelphia are at 22nd and Spruce streets on the first and third Saturdays, 10 a.m.-1 p.m.; and at Second and Spring Garden streets on the first Saturdays, 9 a.m.-noon. These sites only accept clean plastics 1 and 2 (with lids off) and clean, dry mixed paper.

Pierson can be reached at phillyrecycles@aol.com.

Public schools still registering

Philadelphia public schools will be open two additional evenings next week to allow parents to register their children before school starts for most students on Sept. 5.

Schools throughout the city will be open until 7 p.m. Tuesday and Wednesday. This is in addition to the regular registration hours of 9 a.m.-3 p.m. through tomorrow.

By registering before school starts, parents avoid long lines on the first day of classes.

Registration is necessary for children who are new to Philadelphia public schools, or children whose families have moved to a new neighborhood in the city since June.

Parents need to bring previous school records, proof of the child’s age, proof of address and the child’s immunization records. For high-school registration only, the student must accompany the parent or guardian to select courses.

Complete information on registration requirements is available by calling 215-299-4690. To find out the name of your neighborhood school, call 215-299-7840. Ninth-graders go back to school Wednesday, while the first day of classes for all other grades is Sept. 5. Kindergarten starts Sept. 12.

Group for second-time parents

The Supportive Older Women’s Network is forming a support group for grandparents and other seniors raising children 18 and under.

The program meets Wednesdays, 10:15-11:30 a.m., at the South Philadelphia Older Adult Center, Passyunk Avenue and Dickinson Street.

For more information, call Carolyn Schneider, 215-477-6000.

Can you spare a tire?

The Streets Department’s 2002 Tire Round-Up Program will be in the South Philadelphia area on Sept. 14 and 21.

The tire drop-off locations, from 9 a.m.-3 p.m., will be 25th Street and Washington Avenue, and Fourth Street and Washington Avenue.

Only registered block captains, organized community/civic organizations, townwatch organizations and Partnership Recycling Groups who are registered for the Tire Round-Up Program and have received an ID number are eligible for participation.

Registered participants are offered a "tire bounty" of 50 cents for each illegally discarded tire they collect and drop at one of the city’s designated sites. Tires from auto-repair shops, mechanic shops, car dealers and private storage lots are required to be disposed of by the merchant for a fee, and will not be accepted at the drop-off sites.

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