Scrap Metal Recycling


Per the Illinois Department of Central Management Services (CMS), NIU must use the state approved vendor for scrap metal disposal. In the event the state has not contracted a vendor, the university may find its own scrap metal vendor. Proceeds from the sale of scrap metal are given to the state surplus property revolving fund unless an exemption is in place for the university to retain the funds to offset the cost of handling the scrap. 

No employee shall transport scrap metal off campus for any reason, including the transporting of scrap to any scrap metal dealer. Exceptions to this policy on transporting scrap must have prior approval from the director of Campus Services.

Failure to comply with the Joint Committee on Administrative Rules (JCAR) governing scrap metal disposal is a violation of CMS property control rules and violators may be charged with a class B misdemeanor. NIU employees that fail to comply with these rules may be disciplined up to and including termination.

Tagged Property and Property over $100

Any item that is planned to be scrapped and has an NIU property control tag on it must be vetted through Property Control in order to insure that approval is granted by CMS to scrap the equipment and have it removed from inventory. Per the Joint Committee on Administrative Rules (JCAR 5010.910-940), no item of equipment valued at $100 or more may be scrapped without the permission of the Property Control Division. If you have any questions regarding which items pertain to this policy, please contact Property Control for clarification.


The directors of Grounds and Campus Services are responsible for coordinating the delivery and removal of scrap metal containers. All deliveries and removal of scrap containers are to be made by the vendor awarded the contract by the state, and the contracted vendor will contact any subcontractors if/when necessary. Containers are available in the Grounds area for scrap metal disposal.

Additional containers may be obtained upon request for projects or special surplus circumstances. For containers to be delivered to a site other than Grounds, please contact the director of Campus Services for assistance.

If a department has a large amount of scrap that needs to be taken to Grounds for disposal, please contact Grounds in advance to make sure enough room exists to accept the scrap at that time. If a department needs to have scrap picked up for disposal a work request should be submitted via the website portal, email or by calling 815-753-1741 to make arrangements. Departments will need to provide a cost center for the pick-up and hauling charges of scrap to the scrap container.

Accepted Materials

These metals and metal items are collected for disposal:

  • Steel
  • Iron
  • Cast iron
  • Tin
  • Appliances (all appliances except refrigerators that contain CFC refrigerant; no dishwashers or microwaves; any items that contained refrigerants must be accompanied by a statement or certification from the company who removed the refrigerant).
  • Aluminum (including aluminum cans)
  • Stainless steel
  • Copper and insulated copper
  • Brass
  • Radiators
  • Lead
  • Tungsten

Materials Not Accepted

These items are not accepted for scrap recycling and must be disposed of properly by other means:

  • Air conditioning units
  • Motor capacitors
  • Light ballast, and any fixtures that contain them
  • Commercial and industrial refrigeration equipment
  • Microwave ovens
  • Dishwashers
  • Material that contains CFC refrigerant
  • Un-rinsed barrels or drums of any size, regardless of previous contents
  • Uncut compressed gas cylinders
  • Oil, fuel, lubricants or solvents in any quantity
  • Radioactive material
  • Asbestos
  • Bio-hazardous material
  • Any material considered hazardous or toxic under EPA and OSHA regulations
  • Tires, wood, concrete, rubber and other non-metallic substances
  • Explosive, flammable or reactive material

Prohibited Collection

Employees reporting to the Division of Administration and Finance are prohibited from going through trash receptacles, recycling receptacles and large trash containers/lugers to collect any materials.  Broken glass, needles and other dangerous items are prevalent in such receptacles and pose a safety risk. While this document refers to scrap metal, employees should not be taking any type of scrap from dumpsters, trash containers, etc.