Company reopens after state payout

Reynolds Recycling Inc. has reopened all 35 of its locations statewide – including two on Maui – after receiving more than $700,000 in back payments from the state Department of Health.

The redemption center at 380 Alamaha Place is open daily 8 a.m. to 8 p.m. The location at 140 Hobron Ave. is open 8 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. Monday to Saturday. Both locations are closed from noon to 1 p.m. for lunch.

Reynolds Recycling is the largest recycling company in Hawaii with centers on Kauai and Oahu as well. All of the centers closed Thursday due to nonpayment by the Health Department, the company said in a news release.

The company, which has been with the state’s HI-5 recycling program since January 2005, pays customers for their recyclables and then goes to the state for reimbursement.

Bruce Iverson, spokesman for the company, said DOH owes them “considerably more than $1 million” and that the state generally pays in a timely fashion. However, Iverson said that the state has been “much later than usual” with their recent claim for reimbursement and has “put a substantial financial burden” on the company.

The company said it was reimbursed Thursday and “while not a complete clearing of accounts, it will be enough” to reopen all locations, according to its website.

Gary Gill, deputy director of the DOH’s environmental health division, said the company has been a leader in the state’s efforts to recycle glass, metal and plastics. He added that reimbursements are usually made within 10 days of receiving a proper claim, but this one was delayed by as much as 16 days after receipt of some invoices.

Gill said the payment took “a few days longer than usual” but was still “well within the 30-day payment schedule provided by law.”

“While this payment took a few days longer than usual, it concerns us that such a minor delay would lead to the closure of a statewide recycling operation,” Gill said in a news release. “DOH is committed to working closely with all the recyclers in the state to assure that consumers are provided convenient and efficient services that help reduce the necessity of landfills in Hawaii.”