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On Wednesday, April 21, the Governor and Executive Council confirmed the nomination of Steven Bullek to serve on the New Hampshire Waste Management Council. Steve is the Public Works Director for the Town of Lee, NH and is a member of the Board of Trustees of the Northeast Resource Recovery Association (NRRA), a nonprofit that enables communities to manage their own recycling programs and reduce their waste. The NRRA Board submitted Steve’s name as one of three possible nominees after the Governor declined to bring NRRA’s first choice, NRRA Executive Director Reagan Bissonnette, to the Executive Council for a vote.

Steven Bullek, Public Works Director, Town of Lee, NH & NRRA Board of Trustees Member

The Waste Management Council is responsible for consulting with and advising the Director of the New Hampshire Department of Environmental Services (NHDES) Waste Management Division with respect to policy, programs, goals...Read more

NRRA recently had the opportunity to recognize our long-term volunteer, Mary Jane (MJ) Poch. Paula Dow, NRRA's Finance and Human Resource Manager, who has worked with MJ the longest of all NRRA staff, shares the following reflection on MJ's service.

It was 1998 when Mary Jane (MJ) first approached NRRA about the possibility of volunteering. I remember taking that initial phone call. MJ had contacted the RSVP program, run by the Friends Program, to inquire about a volunteer opportunity. Kay Croak, then Executive Director of RSVP, referred MJ to NRRA. At the time, MJ was actually too young to officially sign up as an RSVP volunteer, but Kay was familiar with our organization and told MJ to contact us.

As many of you know, it can be difficult to find volunteers – particularly good ones who want to volunteer regularly. We were absolutely thrilled that MJ wanted to come...Read more


In coordination with Earth Week, NRRA is happy to announce a pilot composting program. Keene, NH volunteer residents, who registered to take a turn at composting, can pick up their Green Cones at the Keene Recycling Center. Volunteers were asked to sign up for either a Green Cone Solar Digester or a Subpod to compost their food scraps as part of the Keene Backyard Compost Pilot Program. The Green Cone is an in-ground digester that breaks down food scraps and doesn't require turning the material to work. A Subpod is an in-ground composting system that uses composting worms to break down food scraps.

These volunteers will help NRRA and the City of Keene collect data on backyard composting and decide which system would work better for local residents. This is a great way to keep “weight out of your waste.” For more information about Municipal Solid Waste and Composting...Read more


Spring is here and 45 NRRA members gathered virtually on April 15 th as part of the Members Operations Marketing (MOM) meeting to talk about reopening Swap Shops at recycling centers during the COVID-19 pandemic. David Witham, Director of Risk Management at Primex, was NRRA’s guest speaker. Primex is the public entity risk pool for NH’s Public Sector, which includes recycling facilities. Their largest area of coverage includes worker’s compensation. Property and liability (slips and falls) are the most common suit. There have been over 1000 claims associated with COVID-19 in the last year. Primex relies on guidance from COVID-19 experts to shape their policies, including the Centers for Disease Control (CDC), Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA), State of NH, and NH Public Health/NH Homeland Security.

David assured members that reoccupying workspaces and increasing occupancy will happen gradually. Most recycling programs continued through 2020 and NH is slowly...Read more


The NRRA Board of Trustees and staff would like to recognize and thank Mike Faller for his years of service to the Board. Mike recently resigned from the Board of Trustees after serving on the Board for nine years, including as Vice President. Mike joined the Board in 2012.

Mike is the Public Works Director for the Town of Meredith, NH where he is responsible for four departments – Highway, Solid Waste, Buildings and Grounds, and Cemetery. He currently has a staff of 25 employees and oversees budget of nearly four million dollars. Mike was also an active member in the NH/VT Solid Waste District serving most of his time on the Executive Board for the project. He was instrumental in closing the ash landfill and negotiating haul contracts with Wheelabrator. He also learned about the incinerator operations located in Claremont NH. Mike also worked closely with Mike...Read more


NRRA congratulates three member communities for successfully passing warrant articles at recent town meetings to improve their recycling programs. Our member services team was pleased to provide technical assistance to support these efforts.

The Town of Bristol, NH set up a Sustainability Committee to gather information for the Selectboard to see if it was possible to bring back recycling to their transfer station. Jan Metcalf of the Sustainability Committee said that Bristol stopped single-stream recycling in 2018 due to increased costs. They currently recycle glass, aluminum cans (funds go to a charity), scrap metal, and construction debris. Everything else goes to the Wheelabrator incinerator in Penacook. They are pleased to announce that Warrant Article 18 for $85,000 to purchase a used horizontal baler, skid steer for loading material, construction of a building to house the baler, and storage trailer for cardboard passed at their March 13 th...Read more

Registration Open & Sponsorship Opportunities Available

It’s a new year, and the Northeast Resource Recovery Association’s (NRRA) annual recycling conference will be held virtually over two mornings: Monday, May 10th and Tuesday, May 11th from 8:00 AM to noon EST. We are inviting solid waste and recycling operators and supervisors, department of public works staff, town administrators, select board members, recycling committee members, government officials, state legislators, school teachers, administrators and students, and residents interested in recycling and waste reduction to join us.

The conference agenda features engaging speakers who will discuss six key topics currently faced by the solid waste and recycling industry. On Monday, attendees will learn about Engaging Residents with Municipal Recycling , Waste Reduction Strategies – Reduce, Reuse, Rot , and Recycling Safely During COVID-19 . On Tuesday, our presenters will discuss National & Local Recycling Markets and Market Specifications , Plastics...Read more


You may be wondering why you’ve heard so much from us lately about Bills of Lading, (aka BOL’s). Recently, a situation arose that further demonstrates why they are so important, so we are sharing this as an example. We were contacted by a member town telling us that their invoice did not match what they sent. We looked for a Bill of Lading, but we did not have one on file because the town had not sent one. We contacted the vendor who, in turn, sent us a copy of their slip that was signed by the town. That slip had a detailed list of items that was being loaded. Without the Bill of Lading, we have nothing to compare to. Because the slip was signed by the town, and because we had no BOL on file, we had no way of disputing this on behalf of the...Read more

Patrick Pinkson-Burke

It is with heartfelt sorrow that I share the news of the passing of Patrick (Pat) Pinkson-Burke. Patrick died unexpectedly on February 22, 2021 at the young age of 71. As many of you may recall, Pat was an integral part of the NRRA for nine years having served a Member Services Representative in 1998 and 1999 and subsequently on NRRA’s Board of Trustees from 2004-2011. I will always remember Pat’s dedication, compassion, and kindness.

NRRA Trustee and former Board President Duncan Watson shared his memories of Pat. “Patrick and I were classmates in graduate school in the early 90’s. We both found a passion in the world of recycling and solid waste management. A forever hippie who kept his eye on the precious earth we all share, Patrick made a difference and he will be sorely missed.”

Former NRRA Staffer Susy Mansfield...Read more


Marc Morgan, Solid Waste Manager at Lebanon, NH Recycling Center, led a conversation about municipal composting as the guest speaker for NRRA’s March 10 Member Operations and Marketing (MOM) meeting. Thirty-six members gathered online to hear how Lebanon has been accepting food scraps from Dartmouth Hitchcock Medical Center and Dartmouth College for the last ten years.

When planning to compost food scraps, NH communities, please remember to contact Mike Nork at NHDES to discuss your plans. Composting meat and dairy products with food scraps will likely require requesting a waiver of the current NHDES regulations or a permit modification, depending on your situation. It is recommended to tour a nearby municipality that is already composting to see it in action.

First, start small with a pilot study when composting. That way, if there are problems with contamination, you will know who to talk with to explain what is...Read more