HOBART | Word about Hobart's latex paint recycling center is now spreading to Porter County.

Recycled paint is available to Porter County residents and businesses due to the recent renewal of an intergovernmental agreement with Hobart, officials said.

The initial agreement with the Recycling and Waste Reduction District of Porter County began in June, said John Dubach, Hobart's public works director.

"We tried it last year as a pilot program and we are renewing it," Dubach said.

Residents and businesses from Porter and Lake counties can purchase the recycled paint for $3 per gallon between 7 a.m. and 2:45 p.m. Monday through Friday at Hobart's Department of Public Works, 340 S. Shelby St.

Nonprofit organizations and government agencies can obtain the paint free of charge.

"We hope more Porter County residents and businesses can become aware that they can obtain this great product," said Therese Davis, executive director of the Recycling and Waste Reduction District of Porter County.

Since June, Porter County residents recycled 812 gallons of latex paint and purchased 213 gallons from Hobart's paint program, Davis said.

"The people who use it love it. We have a lot of repeat customers," said Kelly Kirkilewski, a Hobart recycling clerk.

Last year 9,104 gallons of paint were recycled by Lake and Porter County residents, Kirkilewski said.

The Hobart recycling center sold 987 gallons of recycled paint and donated 512 gallons of recycled paint last year.

"It's a great program, but we definitely need to sell more of it," Kirkilewski said.

Although latex paint drop-offs are restricted to those in Lake and Porter counties, anyone is allowed to buy the recycled paint, which is taupe/beige in color, she said.

The paint can be tinted to another color at local hardware stores.

Porter County residents can continue to drop their unwanted usable latex paint to be recycled at Hobart's Department of Public Works, Davis said.

"This service is very valuable because it keeps latex paint out of landfills, saving our valuable resources," Davis said.

The Hobart recycling facility, the first of its kind in the state, opened Sept. 9, 2010.

For more information, call public works officials at (219) 942-6121.