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Start an office recycling program

If given the chance, most office workers would probably recycle the soda cans and water bottles they sip from throughout the work day. But faced with a lack of appropriate receptacles, helpless pencil pushers are forced to dispose of their beverage containers in the trash.

Tired of having no recycling options, Amanda Baxter of Crescent City, Calif., decided to set up her own office recycling program. She gets to make an ecological statement and even gets to pocket the cash from the recycling center. Her office mates rejoiced, and she went on to win national acclaim and $100 in the Frugal $ense contest for the month of May.

Bankrate: Great tip! How did you come up with it?

Amanda: Well I work at a financial institution and there are only six or seven of us there, but we always drink bottled water or soda or whatever because it's an older building. And everyone would just throw away them away and it would drive me crazy. So I decided to start the recycling program. So I bought a little trash can and put it next to the garbage can and that's where they're all placed now.

It's more for the environment than for the extra $10 a month.

Bankrate: Is that how much you get every month?

Amanda: Yep, it's about $10 ... if you had a bigger office it could really add up.

May's Frugal $ense winner: Amanda Baxter
Amanda Baxter, of Crescent City, Calif., won $100 for submitting the following tip:

Reduce, reuse and recycle!
Start a recycling program at work! I recently purchased a small wastebasket and placed it in my office's break room. I have encouraged all my fellow employees to place all aluminum cans, plastic bottles and glass bottle into the recycling bin instead of the garbage. When full, I take the recyclables to the recycling center and trade them in for cash. Depending on where you live, this could add up to a tidy amount of extra monthly income!
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Amanda Baxter

Bankrate: Why is recycling important to you?

Amanda: I think that recycling should be important to everyone! But for me I think that there are so many areas in life that we are so wasteful and recycling is my way of trying to just do my part.

Bankrate: How environmentally friendly do you consider yourself?

Amanda: I try to do my best. I recycle everything I can. I reuse grocery bags and all that good stuff, but I don't plant trees or anything.

Bankrate: Are you generally frugal?

Amanda: I really am -- I squeak when I walk. I just do the normal stuff. I watch for sales, use coupons and don't drive unnecessarily.

Bankrate: Why did you enter the Frugal contest?

Amanda: I entered the contest to try and give Bankrate readers a new idea. Something that is really easy, takes no time and it could be profitable.

Bankrate: What are you planning to do with the $100?

Amanda: I really do not have any plans for the money but I'm sure I'll figure out something!'s corrections policy
-- Posted: July 6, 2007
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