COSTA MESA — Times are tough indeed.
One unorthodox financial gauge is the recycling business at Orange Coast College's Recycling Center. It's going gang-busters.
More and more people find themselves unemployed and at the steps of the student-run recycling center on Adams Avenue, hauling in pounds of plastic and glass and aluminum and paper and cardboard. They get paid for it by the pound, and many of them are becoming regulars.
In fact the economy is so bad that the recycling center turned a $140,000 profit last year, the largest in the history of the 40-year-old operation, said Mike Carey, the sustainability coordinator who runs the joint and has been working there since 1985. He said that the center on average turns an annual profit of $30,000 to $60,000.
A good portion of the $140,000 will now be turned over to OCC's Associated Student Body to be used for all sorts of academic-related items and purchases for the total good of the student population.