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Victoria County reopens courtesy station

By BY MELISSA CROWE - MCROWE@VICAD.COM
Feb. 6, 2013 at 5:05 p.m.
Updated Feb. 6, 2013 at 8:07 p.m.

Constantino Martin speaks about the re-opening at the Bloomington Courtesy Station on Black Bayou Road No. 1 in Bloomington. Martin used to work at the courtesy station and is glad to see it back open and available to the public. He works there part time.

Got trash?

• WHAT: Precinct 1 Courtesy Station

• WHERE: 706 Black Bayou Road No. 1, Bloomington

• WHEN: 10:30 a.m.- 5:30 p.m. Wednesdays and 9 a.m.- 4 p.m. Saturdays

It takes more than pride to keep a community beautiful.

Precinct 1 Commissioner Danny Garcia hopes by re-opening the courtesy station, which accepts trash and recyclable material, precinct employees can focus on repairing roads rather than picking up litter.

Constantino Martin, 72, runs the courtesy station on Black Bayou Road No. 1.

He grew up in Bloomington, retired from Alcoa and three years ago took a job running the precinct courtesy station for former commissioner Kenny Spann until it closed on May 30.

"People really count on this place to be open so they have a place to dump their trash without going to the landfill," Martin said. "It helps keep our community clean."

On Wednesday, Garcia stayed true to his word that he would reopen the facility.

"I promised I'd open the courtesy station," Garcia said. "They're not money-makers, they're there to provide a service."

Throughout Bloomington, Garcia has a long list of projects ranging from road reconstruction to drainage improvements. Re-opening the courtesy station is another step to accomplishing the goals.

"I know that there will be criticism that I'm spending too much time in Bloomington," Garcia said. "I'm spending time where it's needed."

He estimated the station costs $20,000 to operate annually. However, it brings in about $7,500.

He wants to double revenue this year by offering free recycling service and extending hours.

Martin is hopeful word will spread the station is open and extended hours will increase business.

"We were busy, people were using it before it closed," he said. "A lot of ladies who didn't like to go to the landfill would come here to dump their trash once or twice a week."

Fees range from $5 to $25 depending on the size.

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