San Francisco Expected to Mandate Source Separation of Refuse
The Board of Supervisors is expected this week to pass legislation that will require all persons and businesses located in San Francisco to separate recyclables, compostables and landfill trash and participate in recycling and composting programs. The exact language of the ordinance reads, in part, as follows:
“All personas in San Francisco must source separate their refuse into recyclables, compostables and trash, and place each type of refuse in a separate container designated for disposal of that type of refuse. No person may mix recyclables, compostables or trash, or deposit refuse in a collection container designated for another type of refuse, except as otherwise provided….”
The ordinance was proposed by Mayor Gavin Newson who cited the California Integrated Waste Management Act of 1989 which requires cities and counties to reduce, reuse and recycle (including composting) solid waste generated in the State to the maximum extent feasible before any incineration or landfill disposal of waste, to conserve water, energy and other natural resources. The Act mandates that each local jurisdiction in the State divert 50 percent of discarded materials from landfill.
Owners or managers of multi-family or commercial properties will be required to provide information and/or training for new tenants, employees and contractors, including janitors, on how to source separate recyclables, compostables and trash, and will be required to re-educate tenants, employees and contractors at least once a year.
The fine for any violation at a dwelling or commercial property that generates less than one cubic yard of refuse per week may not initially exceed $100.
If the Director of Public Health causes a dwelling or commercial property to be inspected to determine whether the owner has complied with the ordinance, the owner of the dwelling or commercial property will be required to pay an inspection fee equal to $167 per hour of staff time spent during the inspection.
The ordinance is coming before the Board of Supervisors for a final vote today. The mayor is expected to sign the legislation into law soon thereafter. Only two supervisors voted against the proposal—Sean Elsbernd and Carmen Chu.
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According to the SFAA the proposal has just passed.