State Legislation - AB32 & AB341
Assembly Bill 32 - the California Global Warming Solutions Act - was passed in 2006. It identified a mandatory commercial recycling component as part of the statewide goal to achieve significant greenhouse gas reduction by the year 2020. Assembly Bill 341 was subsequently signed into law October 6, 2011 to implement AB32 for commercial recycling. Formal regulations for commercial recycling were developed and finalized in January 2012, with a new target of recycling at least 75% of garbage by 2020. At a minimum, on or after July 1, 2012, businesses generating >4 cubic yards of waste per week, and multifamily dwellings of 5 or more units, must arrange for recycling services. The City must also implement an education, outreach, and monitoring program to demonstrate its efforts to ensure an effective mandatory commercial recycling program. For more information on the Mandatory Commercial Recycling Law, please visit the California Department of Resources, Recycling and Recovery's (CalRecycle) comprehensive webpage: http://www.calrecycle.ca.gov/
Martinez Municipal Code
The City has for a very long time intended for commercial recycling to become a mandatory program. In fact, Section 8.18.120 of the Martinez Municipal Code, adopted in 1993, requires all "non-residential" (which includes commercial) customers to subscribe to an approved recycling collection program, provided by an authorized recycler licensed by the City, by January 1, 1995, with few exceptions. The State legislation mandating commercial recycling, combined with the commercial recycling requirements of the City's existing Municipal Code, necessitated recent actions of the City to formalize its Mandatory Commercial Recycling Program.
Republic Services Franchise Agreements
These actions included amending the franchise agreements with Republic Services, the City's only authorized recycler, to grant Republic exclusive rights to commercial and industrial recycling (with limited exceptions), and establishing a one-rate system for solid waste and recycling charges, similar to what was done for residential rates in 2000. Granting Republic exclusive rights to commercial and industrial recycling in Martinez, and moving to the one-rate system for commercial refuse and recycling, helps to ensure effective implementation of the mandatory commercial recycling program.
To meet the education, outreach, and monitoring requirements of the new regulations, the City worked with representatives from CalRecycle and Republic Services to develop the "Mandatory Commercial Recycling Strategies" included as Exhibit F in the franchise, that outline how the new program was to be implemented.
If you are a business in need of indoor recycling containers, or would like a waste audit performed at your business to see if you could save money by improving your recycling practices and reducing your garbage bill, please contact Marie Knutson, Republic Services Recycling Coordinator, at (925) 671-5814 to schedule an on-site visit.