The Tribune Democrat, Johnstown, PA

Latest News

January 5, 2013

Law limits how gadgets are trashed

JOHNSTOWN — Christmas traditionally puts the year’s newest high-tech gadgets into homes. And it usually leaves yesterday’s must-haves outside, sitting on the curb for trash day.

Not for much longer, though.

The state’s Covered Device Recycling Act becomes law Jan. 24, making it illegal to throw away most old electronics with the trash.

The effort is aimed at reducing the amount of toxic materials that leach into groundwater.

“The goal here is to take these products out of the waste stream,” said Lisa Kasianowitz, a DEP spokeswoman, noting that many products contain harmful lead, cadmium and mercury. “Items like computers and laptops aren’t biodegradable, so this is an important step.”

But the years-in-the-making effort won’t leave Pennsylvania residents stuck with their old electronics, state officials say.

There are a growing number of options for electronics recycling, including taking the gadgets to retailers, nonprofits and the county’s Solid Waste Authority, Kasianowitz said. In most cases, items are taken free of charge.

Local government

In Cambria County, the Solid Waste Authority accepts many old electronics at its Manor Drive, Ebensburg, location during daily business hours, the authority’s website shows.

Residents can call 472-2109 for more details on the program.

Somerset County residents can take items to JVS Environmental in Shanksville or Ridge Church Outreach, Somerset.

Retail chains

Best Buy touts its program as the “most comprehensive” available.

Originally started in 2008, the company accepts a long list of electronics: Cameras, computers, GPS units and video players.

“Whether it’s old keyboards or 8-track players that have been sitting for years in basements, we’ll take it,” spokeswoman Maggie Habashy said, adding that the devices are accepted at no charge.

Best Buy collects 387 pounds of old electronics at its kiosks for every minute its stores are open, she added.

Staples also offers a free recycling program for office and computer components, its website shows.

Best Buy has added a trade-in program, offering gift cards for many working, newer items such as iPods and cameras.

Text Only | Photo Reprints
Latest News
  • foust_25 Teen shot in Oakhurst

    A 16-year-old New Jersey boy was taken to Conemaugh Memorial Medical Center on Thursday after being shot three times in the Oakhurst section of Johnstown.

    July 24, 2014 1 Photo

  • Audit: City overspent by $700G in 2013

    Legacy costs contributed significantly to the city of Johnstown coming up $689,000 short in its core services funding during 2013.

    July 24, 2014

  • Kuzma, jonathan Guilty plea in hammer death

    The Johnstown man who authorities said killed his father with a hammer last year pleaded guilty Wednesday to criminal homicide, authorities said.

    July 24, 2014 1 Photo

  • quecreek rescue Events to mark anniversary of Quecreek rescue

    When word spread that nine Quecreek miners were trapped underground in July 2002, Bill Arnold’s dairy farm quickly became the rescue effort’s ground zero.

    July 24, 2014 1 Photo

  • Huger, Stephen Accused Hornerstown shooter will stand trial

    A Johnstown man will stand trial in connection with a July 12 shooting in the Hornerstown section of the city.

    July 24, 2014 1 Photo

  • Board names Zahorchak’s successor

    The Greater Johnstown school board at a special meeting Thursday named a superintendent to replace the retiring superintendent, rehired its last business manager and approved other administrative appointments.

    July 24, 2014

  • Pasquerilla, Mark Pasquerilla recognized as arts patron

    First lady Susan Corbett announced Thursday from the Jimmy Stewart Museum in Indiana, Pa., that Mark Pasquerilla of Johnstown has earned the Patron Award from the 2014 Governor’s Awards for the Arts.

    July 24, 2014 1 Photo

  • Ebensburg gets ready to party

    Party down with a shutdown.
    Downtown Shutdown, a street party featuring music and food, will be held from 7 to 11 p.m. Friday in downtown Ebensburg.

    July 24, 2014

  • ROTARY Local Rotary Club earns recognition

    The Rotary Club of Johnstown was named Outstanding Large Club of the Year in District 7330, which serves 42 Rotary Clubs in seven counties in southwest Pennsylvania, at the Rotary District 7330 and District 7300 Joint Conference that was held June 26 through 29 at Seven Springs Mountain Resort.

    July 24, 2014 1 Photo

  • Kara Baumgardner ‘I’m helping other people’: Forest Hills freshman donates regularly to Locks of Love

    Summerhill resident Kara Baumgardner has cut her hair a total of four times in the past five years.
    Each time, she has chopped off 10 to 12 inches for donation to Locks of Love, a nonprofit organization that makes wigs for those 21 and younger who have lost their hair due to medical conditions.

    July 24, 2014 1 Photo


What is the biggest key to reducing gun violence in Johnstown?

Tackling the area's drug problem.
Controlling folks moving into city housing.
Monitoring folks in treatment centers and halfway houses.
Tougher sentencing by the court system.
More police on the streets.

     View Results
Order Photos

Photo Slideshow

House Ads