Kapaa center does not take green waste
: I'm having trouble disposing of grass, sand and dirt. I took a load to Kapaa Transfer Station, and they said to take it to the green-waste site, but green waste won't take it because it's grass mixed with sand and dirt. I thought biodegradable substances would be accepted there. Someone said we could rent a container for $450 and have a private company take it away. Is there any alternative?
Answer: You are able to take very small loads of sand and dirt -- a "few" buckets -- to the Kapaa Transfer Station, or larger amounts -- a pickup truckload -- to the Waimanalo Gulch Sanitary Landfill.
Certain materials, including rock, concrete and asphalt, are restricted because they "cause our roll-off containers to become very heavy and difficult to manage," explained Wayne Hamada, disposal operations engineer with the city Refuse Division.
The city does not accept green waste at the Kapaa Transfer Station because Hawaiian Earth Products is nearby on Kapaa Quarry Road.
The company accepts yard trimmings and untreated wood but not necessarily all "biodegradable substances," Hamada said.
The person you talked to at the transfer station apparently thought your load was largely green waste, he said.
"If the load was predominantly sand and dirt, I'm certain the directions would have been to take the load to Waimanalo Gulch Sanitary Landfill" in Nanakuli, he said.
The city allows homeowners to dispose of their trash and other debris for free at city disposal sites provided they use a pickup truck, minivan or automobile, and provided they limit the number of loads to two per day.
However, the city is trying to divert recyclable material, including residential green waste, away from the Waimanalo Gulch landfill.
"Homeowners who use the landfill are being asked to help by separating and delivering their green waste to convenience centers or directly to" Hawaiian Earth Products, Hamada said.
Q: I want to buy a new dryer and asked the Gas Co. to close my gas line so that I could remove my old dryer. The Gas Co. said they do not turn the gas off or on, and I must call either a plumber or a gas-certified installer who follows government code. What is a gas-certified installer? Is that someone who had training from the Gas Co., or is it someone who has a certain license from the government? It would cost $70 to $100 for a plumber to turn the gas off and another $70 to $100 to turn it back on.
A: Unfortunately, you're going to have to hire a plumber.
A "certified installer" is basically a licensed plumber, said Steve Golden, spokesman for the Gas Co.
He said the company does not "certify" people.
On the neighbor islands, the company may turn the gas off and on, he said, "but here (on Oahu), it's a manpower issue for us to be doing it, so we refer (customers) to plumbers."
Got a question or complaint?
Call 529-4773, fax 529-4750, or write to Kokua Line, Honolulu Star-Bulletin, 500 Ala Moana Blvd., No. 7-210, Honolulu 96813. As many as possible will be answered. E-mail to firstname.lastname@example.org
. See also: Useful phone numbers