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County expands recycling efforts
Now accepted: Books, cooking oil, plastic bags
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Forsyth County News
At a glance
* Forsyth County's recycling centers are at Old Atlanta Road, Tolbert Street and Settingdown Road.
* They are open from 7:30 a.m. to 5 p.m. Monday through Saturday and are closed on Sundays and county holidays.
* For more information, go online at

Tracie Garcia says she likes to recycle as much as possible.

Thanks to a recent decision by Forsyth County, she can add three more items to her recycling list: books, cooking oil and plastic bags.

The county's three recycling facilities now have bins for accepting the items at no cost to residents.

"I think it's great for Forsyth County," Garcia said. "It can't be a bad thing."

Indeed, it's a good thing, said Tammy Wright, noting that bags and oil can be bad for landfills.

Wright is the director of Keep Forsyth County Beautiful, a county department that oversees recycling, among other duties.

Many residents contacted the organization after Thanksgiving to ask if they could recycle cooking oil, Wright said.

They can now, with the county accepting most cooking oils, including canola, vegetable and olive oil.

The expansion comes during an economic downturn that has forced other entities to scale back their recycling efforts.

Neighboring Dawson County is no longer accepting glass, plastic or paperboard materials.

Wright said Forsyth is able to expand its program because the company that accepts the items is in the county, while Dawson's recyclables must be shipped elsewhere.

"Our situation is more efficient as far as the cost," Wright said.

For Garcia, who likes to "recycle as much as I possibly can," said she can take "that big wad of grocery bags" beneath her sink and do something with them.

"I collect them and I collect them and I always say to myself, 'I'll use these eventually,'" Garcia said. "I have an excuse to get rid of them now."