BILL ANALYSIS                                                                                                                                                                                                    

                                                                  AB 341
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          Date of Hearing:   May 18, 2011

                                Felipe Fuentes, Chair

                     AB 341 (Chesbro) - As Amended:  May 5, 2011 

          Policy Committee:                              Natural 

          Urgency:     No                   State Mandated Local Program: 
          Yes    Reimbursable:              No


          This bill requires the Department of Recycling and Resources 
          Recovery (Calrecycle) to ensure that 75% of solid waste is 
          diverted from landfill and makes related requirements of 
          commercial solid waste generators and local governments.  
          Specifically, this bill:

          1)Requires Calrecycle to ensure, by January 1, 2020, and each 
            year thereafter, that 75% of California solid waste is source 
            reduced, recycled or composted.

          2)Requires a commercial waste generator-meaning a business that 
            contracts for solid waste services and generates more than 
            four cubic yards of solid waste per week or is a multifamily 
            residential dwelling of five units or more-to arrange for 
            recycling services to the extent that the services are offered 
            and reasonably available from a local service provider.

          3)Requires a local government to implement a commercial solid 
            waste recycling program designed to divert solid waste from 

           FISCAL EFFECT  

          1)Cost to Calrecycle of approximately $1 million in 2014 and 
            again in 2019 to contract for waste characterization studies 
            to determine waste streams and materials upon which to 
            concentrate waste diversions efforts.  It is not clear whether 
            the Integrated Waste Management Account (IWMA) would be able 
            to support these costs absent revenue increases.


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          2)Unknown additional annual costs to Calrecycle, possibly in the 
            hundred thousands of dollars, depending upon how Calrecycle 
            decided to ensure waste diversion of 75%, as it is directed to 
            do by the bill.  (IWMA)


           1)Rationale.   According to the author and Californians Against 
            Waste (CAW) (sponsor), diversion of solid waste from landfill 
            benefits California in numerous ways.  The author notes 
            California's success at reducing the portion of its solid 
            waste it buries in the ground, highlighting that, according to 
            Calrecycle, the state diverts from landfill 58% of the solid 
            waste it generates each year.  The author also notes, however, 
            the amount of waste generated in California per person 
            continues to climb and that it is important for the state to 
            work towards further reducing the amount of solid waste going 
            to landfill.  The author contends the waste diversion goal 
            established in this bill will help the state achieve further 
            waste reduction and that the mandatory commercial waste 
            reduction will provide opportunities to do so.  

               a)   Diversion Goal Achieved, but More Waste Than Ever 
               Landfilled.   AB 939 (Chapter 1095, Statutes of 1989, Sher), 
                among other things, established the state's 50% diversion 
               program and a state tipping fee imposed at $1 per ton of 
               solid waste brought to a solid waste facility for disposal. 
                Subsequent legislation increased the maximum tipping fee.  
               The state has since achieved and surpassed the 50% 
               diversion goal, as noted above.  

                Achieving the solid waste diversion goal does not mean that 
               the volume of solid waste disposed of in landfills in 
               California has decreased by 50%.  Actual disposal of solid 
               waste statewide has increased substantially since 1990 and 
               has outpaced the state's population increase.  According to 
               Calrecycle, the commercial sector accounts for more than 
               60% of the state's solid waste disposal.  
              b)   Multifamily-Building Residents Find It Hard to Recycle.   
               According to Californians Against Waste (CAW), there are 
               approximately 7.1 million Californians living in 
               approximately 2.4 million multifamily dwellings.  CAW 


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               contends less than 40% of these residents have access to 
               residential recycling services because the building owner 
               does not provide recycling facilities on premises.

           3)Related Legislation.   SB 1020 (Padilla, 2007) would have 
            required Calrecycle's predecessor to develop a plan to achieve 
            a 75% statewide rate of diversion of solid waste from landfill 
            by 2020.  The bill passed the Senate 23-14 but was held by 
            this committee.

           4)Opposition.   The policy committee notes opposition from the 
            Orange County Board of Supervisors and several waste 
            management businesses.
          Analysis Prepared by  :    Jay Dickenson / APPR. / (916) 319-2081