PINE RIVER -- The Cass County Board approved an agreement Tuesday with the Leech Lake Reservation, contingent upon the county attorney's approval, to share costs to operate a garbage and recycling collection center near Cass Lake.
The board will review costs before renewing the agreement at the end of this year.
Leech Lake Reservation built the center with a grant and will provide free collection services to enrolled Leech Lake Indian band members for garbage and recyclables.
Non-enrolled residents of that area will purchase punch cards from Cass Lake area businesses or city hall to bring garbage to the center at a $3 per bag cost. Recycling will be free.
Cass County Environmental Services Director Paul Fairbanks told the board the county will recover some costs through the punch card user fees charged non-Indians.
Leech Lake Reservation will rent solid waste containers to Cass County for disposal and transport of waste: one 30-cubic-yard garbage compactor for $350 per month, two 40-cubic-yard roll-off boxes for mixed solid wastes at $250 per month each and two 40-cubic-yard roll-off boxes for tires and appliances at $125 per month each.
The county will subsidize one person's salary at $7.50 per hour, plus benefits toward the management staff operating the center.
Leech Lake Reservation will hire, supervise and accept responsibility for that and other employees. The reservation also will maintain and operate the center.
The project is designed to diminish disposal of waste at unapproved dumping sites and in woods in northern Cass County.
Leech Lake Reservation will continue to contribute $1,730 per month, based on the number of Indian households on the reservation, to help Cass County offset the cost of disposing of garbage from that area at a landfill outside the county.
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