Make us your home page

Today’s top headlines delivered to you daily.

(View our Privacy Policy)

Hernando schools selling old PCs for recycling

BROOKSVILLE — With one vote Tuesday, the Hernando County School Board may put a great many computers out to pasture.

More than 1,400 machines — plus assorted monitors, projectors, switches and other gizmos — have passed into obsolescence and need to be recycled, officials say. The entire technological pile is expected to fetch $7,000 if it is sold to Creative Recycling Systems of Tampa.

"Most of them are 2003 and older," said Jeanne Leftwich, the district's property control and warehouse manager. "The board (previously) approved that all computer hardware would go through recycling."

Last fall, the district embarked upon a top-to-bottom overhaul of its computer technology program, leasing more than 11,000 Dell computers in a four-year, $8.1-million deal.

That brought a lot of smiles, but also a few protests from the handful of schools that had committed to incompatible Apple Computer products. Parents at Suncoast Elementary said perfectly good Macintosh laptops donated by their School Advisory Committee would be removed.

But Hernando officials said those schools were eventually allowed to keep their old computers, with the understanding that they wouldn't get any assistance for them from overstretched technology aides.

"If it was marked 'Do not remove,' it wasn't removed," said Melissa Harts, the district's technology director. "But they had to know those Macs weren't going to be supported."

Around 1,500 newer computers purchased before the Dell agreement will be redistributed to schools, with a third going to schools that purchased them with federal aid dollars, she said.

Of the computers to be recycled, around 90 were purchased in 2003 or 2004. But officials say they can't be sold piecemeal to families or donated to organizations.

Under state law, they must be offered in a public sale if they're offered at all. And such sales haven't gone well in the past, with some machines getting improperly dumped. Computers and monitors contain toxic chemicals, and their disposal is regulated by state and federal laws.

"When we would sell them to Joe Public, we had no idea what happened to those," Leftwich said. "They'd end up in the landfill. We'd get calls from the police department that there were computers laying out in a pasture that were ours, that we had sold."

The School Board will take up the matter Tuesday at its 7 p.m. meeting at 919 North Broad St.

Tom Marshall can be reached at [email protected] or (352) 848-1431.

Hernando schools selling old PCs for recycling 12/05/08 [Last modified: Wednesday, December 10, 2008 9:08pm]
Photo reprints | Article reprints

© 2017 Tampa Bay Times


Join the discussion: Click to view comments, add yours

  1. Review: Kenny Loggins, Michael McDonald team up to cool down the Clearwater Jazz Holiday


    A cool breeze swept through Coachman Park Saturday night. Couple of them, actually.

    Kenny Loggins performed at the Clearwater Jazz Holiday on Oct. 21, 2017.
  2. No. 16 USF hangs on at Tulane, off to first 7-0 start


    NEW ORLEANS — After half a season of mismatches, USF found itself in a grudge match Saturday night.

    USF quarterback Quinton Flowers (9) runs for a touchdown against Tulane during the first half of an NCAA college football game in New Orleans, La., Saturday, Oct. 21, 2017. (AP Photo/Derick E. Hingle) LADH103
  3. Lightning buries Penguins (w/video)

    Lightning Strikes

    TAMPA — Ryan Callahan spent a lot of time last season rehabilitating his injured hip alongside Steven Stamkos, who was rehabbing a knee after season-ending surgery. During those hours, Callahan noticed two things about Stamkos: his hunger and his excitement to return this season.

    Tampa Bay Lightning defenseman Slater Koekkoek (29) advances the puck through the neutral zone during the first period of Saturday???‚??„?s (10/21/17) game between the Tampa Bay Lightning and the Pittsburgh Penguins at Amalie Arena in Tampa.
  4. Spain planning to strip Catalonia of its autonomy


    BARCELONA, Spain — The escalating confrontation over Catalonia's independence drive took its most serious turn Saturday as Prime Minister Mariano Rajoy of Spain announced he would remove the leadership of the restive region and initiate a process of direct rule by the central government in Madrid.

    Demonstrators in Barcelona protest the decision to take control of Catalonia to derail the independence movement.
  5. Funeral held for soldier at center of political war of words (w/video)


    COOPER CITY — Mourners remembered not only a U.S. soldier whose combat death in Africa led to a political fight between President Donald Trump and a Florida congresswoman but his three comrades who died with him.

    The casket of Sgt. La David T. Johnson of Miami Gardens, who was killed in an ambush in Niger. is wheeled out after a viewing at the Christ The Rock Church, Friday, Oct. 20, 2017  in Cooper City, Fla. (Pedro Portal/Miami Herald via AP) FLMIH102