Free paper shredding Saturday in Southold

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Saturday, it's not just Saturday in Southold -- it's paper shredding day.

Back by popular demand, the event, one of the more unusual of the year in Southold, will take place at the Peconic Lane recreation center in Peconic.

"We offer it as a free service," Town Supervisor Scott Russell said. "It's been very well-received. It's one of our more popular offerings . . . last year we got half a million pounds of paper."

The work is done by a commercial shredder, and town residents may bring any paper records they want destroyed to the recreation center.

It's available to businesses as well. "People bring their old paperwork to us . . . anything they don't want to trust to the recycling pile," Russell added.

The town tried the free shredding last year as an experiment, and it worked so well they made it a biannual service.

Shredding hours are 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. The town will accept all paper documents and files, computer paper, checks, register receipts, manila folders and spiral loose leaf binders. They even will take softcover books.

But no three-ring metal binders are accepted, nor are hardcover books, wood, plastic or metal.

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Russell said the service is offered free because, with the high price of recycled paper, firms that shred the paper that is brought in don't charge the town to shred it and take it away.

The recreation center is normally not in use on Saturdays, and the shredding in the parking lot does not interfere with any other activities, town officials said.

No other towns on the East End offer a similar service. Southold officials have not set a date for next year's shreds.

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