- Associated Press - Friday, June 27, 2014

SPENCER, Ind. (AP) - Angi Frank has worked for Owen County since 2001. She’s been a part-time health food inspector and serves as a deputy coroner.

Now, Frank is the new director of the Owen County Robert (Bob) E. Clark Recycling Center.

“It wasn’t that far of a stretch for me to do this,” she told The Herald-Times (http://bit.ly/1lUFtby ). “I’m concerned about the environment. I hope everybody is.”

She and her team, part-time employees Oren Demaree and Willie Vance, and a group of volunteers face the challenge of improving operations at the center, located at 367 W. Ind. 46, next to the Owen County Jail.

Earlier this year, the recycling center was in danger of closing. Some people in Owen County, including Commissioner Tony Voelker, suggested closing the center or turning it over to a private operator.

Financed by the county, the recycling center has lost money for the past four years. For instance, its 2013 budget was $100,000, but just $40,000 in income was generated.

Frank planned to visit nearby recycling centers in Bloomington and Ellettsville to learn more about how Monroe County’s centers turn their recyclables into a viable revenue stream.

The Owen County recycling center currently accepts No. 1-7 plastics, sheet plastics, single-use plastic bags, aluminum and steel cans, scrap metal, lead-free glass, batteries and various forms of paper including newspaper, magazines, paper sacks, mixed paper, shredded paper and phone books.

The center also takes trash at a price of $1 for each 30-gallon trash bag and $2 for larger bags. Frank said she tries to educate those who bring their trash for disposal at the center and appeal to their wallets.

On a recent Thursday afternoon, sisters-in-law Tina Bean and Brandi Smeltzer searched though boxes of books from a local school.

Frank said she couldn’t imagine throwing brand new school books into recycling bins, so she took to the center’s new Facebook page and offered them up for free.

It’s akin to something Bob Clark would have done. Clark opened and ran the recycling center as a volunteer.

Now, the building’s named after him.

“He was the true hero bringing this to life in Owen County,” Frank said of Clark.

The center is open 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Tuesday through Friday, and 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. Saturdays.

For more information, call the center at 812-829-3047 or go to the recycling center’s Facebook page by searching “Owen County Recycle Center.”

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Information from: The Herald Times, http://www.heraldtimesonline.com

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