by Wendy Piersall
Mandatory Recycling Ordinance Summary
The San Diego County mandatory recycling ordinance, Chapter 5 of Division 8 of Title 6 of the San Diego County Code to Regulate Storage, Collection, Transportation, and Disposal of Solid Waste, includes these major elements:
- designation of materials to be recycled from residential, commercial, and industrial sources;
- a prohibition against disposal of designated recyclable materials with mixed refuse at County solid waste facilities;
- a requirement that waste haulers operating in the unincorporated areas of the County must provide their customers with collection of designated recyclables in accordance with the regional implementation schedule and waste generators must store designated recyclables separately from solid waste for pick-up.
The County will be awarding non-competitive tonnage grants to cities, with the exception of the City of San Diego, and to haulers in the unincorporated area based on the tons of designated residential recyclables documented to have been diverted from County landfills. Competitive Technical Assistance Project (TAP) grants also will be awarded for diversion of commercial and industrial wastes.
County Department of Public Works personnel will enforce the ordinance by conducting random inspections of vehicles to determine contents and origins of vehicles entering County disposal facilities. Vehicles carrying loads from those cities that have adopted and are diligently enforcing similar approved recycling, ordinance provisions for solid waste collectors and generators shall be exempt from random inspections. Trash set-outs in the unincorporated area also will be inspected to determine that waste generators are complying with the separate storage requirements of the ordinance.
Ordinance Implementation Schedule
The ordinance implementation schedule by waste source and region, including progressive enforcement measures, is summarized in Table 1.
Following the initial three month warning period at each County landfill haulers delivering solid waste containing designated recyclables will be subject to surcharges of $ 25; two months later, $ 50; and, two months after that, a maximum of $ 100 per load.
Citizens hauling their own wastes in cars, vans, and pick-up trucks, will be subject to an initial one month warning period in the North County region and then assessment of a $ 15 maximum surcharge consistent with the schedule for implementing the ordinance for single-family residential wastes in each region of the County.
In accordance with the regional implementation schedule, haulers that collect wastes from single-family and multi-family households in the unincorporated area will be required to provide their single family household customers with separate collection of designated recyclables at least once weekly. They also must provide curbside recycling collection containers to all these households at the beginning of the program, and to each new household that they service thereafter.
Ordinance Incentive Project
As an incentive to stimulate single-family curbside and multifamily residential recycling programs, noncompetitive tonnage grants will be allocated according to the total tons of designated residential recyclables, excluding yard and wood wastes, documented as having been collected from these households and marketed from each city and the unincorporated areas. Documentation will include receipts and weight tickets for the sale of materials, and reporting forms that the County will provide, to summarize the tonnage information.
Tonnage grants will be awarded quarterly, to eligible cities and haulers in the unincorporated area, commencing with the first quarter of FY 1991/92, at the rate of $ 7.75 per ton, up to a limit of $ 2 million total in FY 1991/92. Cities will have the discretion to disburse these funds to those haulers within their jurisdictions that perform the recycling collections and provide the necessary documentation.
To enhance further recycling of commercial and industrial wastes, the County will institute a third round of competitive Technical Assistance Project (TAP) grants totalling $ 525,000. Priority will be given to programs that have potential to divert the greatest quantities of materials that otherwise would be disposed in County landfills.
RESIDENTIAL RECYCLABLES (eligible for tonnage grants)
- aluminum, glass bottles and jars, newspaper-, plastic beverage bottles, tin and bi-metal cans, white goods (appliances)
(a) Office Buildings of more than 20,000 square feet:
- aluminum, corrugated cardboard, newspaper, office paper
(b) Hospitality Industry, including all restaurants and taverns:
- aluminum, corrugated cardboard, glass jars and bottles, plastic beverage bottles, tin and bi-metal cans, white goods (appliances)
- asphalt, concrete, dirt, land clearing brush, sand, rock
- leaves, grass, weeds, and wood materials from trees and shrubs generated from residential sources
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