Question: Kokua Line used to publicize those drive-thru recycling sites. Do they not hold those anymore? I liked them because I could take relatively small amounts of different types of stuff and know that it would all get to the right recycler.
Answer: The Going Green community recycling events have been sporadic during the pandemic, but they do occur occasionally and we try to let people know about them. There’s one scheduled for 9 to 11 a.m. Saturday at Castle High School, 45-386 Kaneohe Bay Drive, coordinator Rene Mansho said in an email.
The volunteers who unload cars will comply with COVID-19 prevention guidelines by wearing face masks and maintaining physical distancing, she said, and donors should do the same.
The following items will be accepted for recycling, she said: computers, printers and scanners (one load per car); TVs (one per car); batteries (auto and lead-acid only); HI-5 containers (redeemable plastic and aluminum); used eyeglasses and hearing aids; clothing in at least good condition, especially prom-style dresses and accessories (for the Bella Project) and women’s business attire (for the YWCA’s Dress for Success program); used towels and blankets (for Poi Dogs and Popoki and the Oahu SPCA); plus canned goods for the Hawaii Foodbank.
Your question highlights an important point: It’s helpful when donors pre-sort their bags and boxes so that the receiving nonprofit organization can quickly retrieve intended donations. For example, put your towels in one bag, your women’s business attire in another, etc.
There are many items that Going Green does not accept, and bringing them creates unnecessary work for the volunteers who unload donors’ cars, and can bog down the drop-off line. Please don’t bring any of the following, which won’t be accepted: metal, tires, paint, microwave ovens, cooking oil, motor oil, ink cartridges, toner, hazardous fluids, cardboard or other paper, plastics (other than HI-5 redeemables), wood or bulky items.
Mansho seeks service organizations and other groups who are willing to host a future Going Green event, unloading the cars at the one-stop drop-off and helping sort donations. “ All you need is a parking lot and 15 volunteers,” she said in the email. For more information, call her at 291-6151.
Q: What about other household items, like kitchenware?
A: No. Household items are not accepted, except for those listed on the acceptable list (see first question).
Q: I got the debit card, which I am grateful for, but is this going to cost me my SNAP? I don’t want to lose an ongoing benefit because of a one-time payment.
A: No, it shouldn’t. Economic Impact Payments issued by the U.S. Treasury Department “can’t be counted as income when determining if you or anyone else is eligible for benefits or assistance, or how much you or anyone else can receive, under any federal program or under any state or local program financed in whole or in part with federal funds. These programs also can’t count Economic Impact Payments as a resource for purposes of determining eligibility for a period of 12 months from receipt,” according to the Internal Revenue Service.
So if you don’t spend the money within 12 months, it could count as an asset at that point and potentially affect your eligibility.
SNAP, which stands for the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program, formerly known as food stamps, relies on federal funding. For more information about applying for SNAP and other assistance in Hawaii, see humanservices.hawaii.gov.
Mahalo to all the younger people who have kept working through these difficult conditions, at the grocery stores and gas stations and post office and everywhere. I am glad I am retired and can stay home when I want and need to. — A kupuna
Write to Kokua Line at Honolulu Star-Advertiser, 7 Waterfront Plaza, Suite 210, 500 Ala Moana Blvd., Honolulu 96813; call 529-4773; fax 529-4750; or email firstname.lastname@example.org.