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Angel of Shavano Recycling has notified Chaffee County administration that it is terminating its contract with the County for recycling services and closing its Poncha Springs-based operations center on April 8, 2021. This will also be its last day providing recycling services for households and businesses within the county.

Roll-off container at Salida Recycling Center. Photo by Merrell Bergin

“It has been a difficult decision for Angel of Shavano to close the business, but one that had to be made for our family’s growth and well-being,” said the owner of Angel of Shavano Recycling Mickey Barry.

Beginning April 8, the community drop-off recycling sites in Salida and Buena Vista managed by Angel of Shavano will be closed while the County evaluates alternatives for county-wide recycling programs. Updates will be provided and posted to as soon as possible to inform the community on updated recycling options as they are determined.

Assessing recycling options to address Angel of Shavano’s departure from this role

Cardboard fills multiple roll-off containers at Salida Recycling Center, operated by Angel of Shavano Recycling. Photo by Merrell Bergin

Chaffee County government has contracted with Angel of Shavano, a private recycling firm since 2006 to process recyclable cardboard, plastics, aluminum/tin, glass, paper, and newspaper. During this time, Angel of Shavano also accepted household recyclables collected through Waste Management and provided recycling drop-off bins throughout the county for general community use.

Over the past few years, as the market for several types of recyclables disappeared, especially the Chinese market for plastics, the economic viability of recycling has been precarious.

“Environmental stewardship is a strongly held value within Chaffee County, and this includes minimizing the recyclable materials going into our landfill. It is important for our communities to have recycling options here,” said  County Commissioner Greg Felt.

“We also recognize that the commodity industry for post-consumer recyclables has continued to be flat, creating difficult market conditions for rural communities like ours. We thank the Barry family for their perseverance through several years of these conditions and wish them well in the future.”

County Schedules Special meeting to Discuss County Recycling Needs

A Special Meeting of the BOCC has been scheduled for 9:00 a.m. Friday, April 2nd to discuss possible solutions to county-wide household and business recycling needs. The meeting will be on zoom at

In 2019, Chaffee County generated 26,237 tons of waste, of which 1,912 tons (7.3 percent) were recycled or composted. Through the financial support provided by an allocation from the Waste Disposal Fund, Chaffee County and its local municipalities are able to help sustain viable communities.