On Centre: Around Bellefonte | Unwanted medicine disposal service gains in popularity

Bellefonte has increased some of the services it provides.

Last year it began collecting unwanted prescription pills to make sure they are disposed of correctly, and Borough Manager Ralph Stewart said the program has been going increasingly well.

The borough collects the medication in a repurposed mailbox in the police station lobby and sends it to Penn State to be incinerated for a small cost. Stewart did not have specific numbers, but said the number of pounds destroyed has increased steadily.

“I think as more and more people realize that we have a place that these types of things can be taken to be disposed of properly, we’ll see the numbers continue to increase,” he said.

The program is designed to keep people from flushing the medications down the toilet or allowing them to get into the wrong hands. Stewart said environmental risks arise when the medication is disposed of through the sewer system.

Liquids and over-the-counter medications also are accepted, but people are asked to consult the office attendant if they would like to dispose of liquids. Hours from drop off are Monday through Friday, 8 a.m. to 4 p.m., and the room is locked all other times.

Pay bills online

The borough is now accepting credit card payments for water, sewer and refuse bills.

Stewart said the number of calls requesting that service have continued to increase over the years, and officials had been looking at a way to implement it.

The bills can be paid online through a link on the borough’s website. A small fee is assessed based on the amount of the bill and paid directly to Diversified Technology Corp., the company that administers the service.

There is no additional cost to the borough, and mailed or hand-delivered bills will still be accepted. Stewart said it’s an optional service for anyone who would prefer that convenience.