BILL ANALYSIS                                                                                                                                                                                                    

                                                                AB 341

                        Senator S. Joseph Simitian, Chairman
                              2011-2012 Regular Session
           BILL NO:    AB 341
           AUTHOR:     Chesbro
           AMENDED:    May 5, 2011
           FISCAL:     Yes               HEARING DATE:     June 27, 2011
           URGENCY:    No                CONSULTANT:       Caroll 

            SUMMARY :    
            Existing law  :

           1) Under the California Integrated Waste Management Act (Act) 
              of 1989:

              a)    Requires each city or county source reduction and 
                 recycling element to include an implementation schedule 
                 that shows a city or county must divert 25% of solid 
                 waste from landfill disposal or transformation by 
                 January 1, 1995, through source reduction, recycling, 
                 and composting activities, and must divert 50% of solid 
                 waste on and after January 1, 2000.  (Public Resources 
                 Code 41780).

              b)    Requires the Department of Resources Recycling and 
                 Recovery (DRRR) to determine compliance status for 
                 cities and counties in achieving and maintaining the 50% 
                 diversion rate.  Jurisdictions are found to be in 
                 compliance by meeting or exceeding the 50% diversion 
                 rate and implementing the programs described in their 
                 plans or by making a good faith effort to implement 
                 their programs but not achieving the 50% diversion rate. 
                  Jurisdictions who do not meet the above are placed on 
                 compliance orders and are subject to fines.  (41850).

              c)    Authorizes a local governmental agency to determine 
                 aspects of solid waste handling that are of local 
                 concern, such as frequency of collection, levels of 


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                 service, and fees.  (40059).

              d)    Provides programs for recycling at certain types of 
                 facilities (e.g., schoolsites, large venues), and 
                 requires model ordinances for certain matters (e.g., 
                 adequate areas for collection and loading of recyclable 
                 materials in development projects; diversion of 
                 construction and demolition materials; solid waste 
                 reduction, reuse, and recycling at large venues).

              e)    Prohibits a local agency from issuing a building 
                 permit for a development project unless the project 
                 provides for adequate space for collecting and loading 
                 recyclable materials.  (42905)

              f)    Authorizes DRRR to designate and certify local 
                 enforcement agencies (LEAs) to carry out local 
                 permitting and enforcement of solid waste facilities.  
                 (43200 et seq.).

              g)    Prohibits the operator of a solid waste facility from 
                 making a significant change to the design or operation 
                 of a facility that is not authorized in the existing 
                 solid waste facility permit.  (44004).

              h)    Requires local jurisdictions to prepare, adopt, and 
                 submit to the DRRR, a Non-Disposal Facility Element 
                 (NDFE) which includes a description of new facilities 
                 and expansion of existing facilities, and all solid 
                 waste facility expansions (except disposal and 
                 transformation facilities) that recover for reuse at 
                 least 5% of the total volume.  The NDFE must also be 
                 consistent with the implementation of a local 
                 jurisdiction's Source Reduction and Recycling Element.  
                 (41730 to 41736).

           2) Under the California Global Warming Solutions Act of 2006 

              a)    Requires ARB to determine the 1990 statewide 
                 greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions level and approve a 
                 statewide GHG emissions limit that is the equivalent to 
                 that level, to be achieved by 2020 (Health and Safety 


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                 Code 38500 et seq.).  ARB must adopt rules and 
                 regulations to achieve GHG emission reductions to 
                 achieve the maximum technologically feasible and 
                 cost-effective reductions in GHGs, subject to certain 
                 requirements (38562(h)).

              b)    Requires ARB to prepare and approve a scoping plan 
                 for achieving the maximum technologically feasible and 
                 cost-effective reductions in GHG emissions from sources 
                 or categories of sources of GHGs by 2020.  ARB must 
                 evaluate the total potential costs and total potential 
                 economic and noneconomic benefits of the plan for 
                 reducing GHGs to the state's economy, and public health, 
                 using the best economic models, emission estimation 
                 techniques, and other scientific methods.  The plan must 
                 be updated at least once every five years.  (38561).

           3) Authorizes the ARB to adopt GHG emission limits or emission 
              reduction measures prior to January 1, 2011, imposing those 
              limits or measures prior to January 1, 2012, or providing 
              early reduction credit where appropriate.  (38563).

            This bill  :  

           1) Adds extensive findings and declarations related to 
              recycling and recycling infrastructure.

           2) Requires that the DRRR must ensure that by January 1, 2020, 
              and annually thereafter, 75% of the solid waste generated 
              in California is source reduced, recycled or composted.

           3) Requires that by January 1, 2012, any owner or operator of 
              a business that contracts for solid waste services and 
              generates more than 4 cubic yards of material per week or 
              is a multifamily residential dwelling of five units or more 
              shall arrange for recycling services, consistent with state 
              or local laws or requirements, including a local ordinance 
              or agreement, applicable to the collection, handling, or 
              recycling of solid waste to the extent that these services 
              are offered and reasonably available from a local service 

           4) Requires that each jurisdiction implement a commercial 


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              solid waste recycling program appropriate for that 
              jurisdiction designed to divert solid waste generated from 
              businesses as described.

           5) Adds to the list of determinations that a LEA can make when 
              reviewing a solid waste facility permit.  Allows the LEA to 
              consider whether to require a modification for a proposed 
              change in maximum tonnage if it is provided for within the 
              existing design capacity as described in the facility 
              transfer processing report as well as relevant permits and 
              environmental review pursuant to the California 
              Environmental Quality Act.

           6) Changes the due date for the State Agency Recycling Program 
              annual report from September 1st to May 1st. 

           7) Proposes changes to the amendment process for NDFEs that 
              would allow changes without approval by the local task 
              force and instead require the jurisdiction making the 
              change to provide the information to the local task force 
              as described. 

            COMMENTS  :

            1)Purpose of Bill  .  According to the author, California is a 
             national leader in diverting waste from landfills by 
             currently diverting 58% of all waste, which is well above 
             the state's 50% mandate.  The state has achieved this 
             mandate in part by increasing recycling opportunities 
             through the Integrated Waste Management Act.  Despite the 
             state's high diversion rate, Californians still dispose more 
             waste than the national average.  There are measures that 
             can be taken, such as mandatory commercial and multifamily 
             residential recycling, that will decrease the state's solid 
             waste disposal and increase its diversion rate.  
             Additionally, new waste diversion of 75% will help 
             facilitate more source reduction, recycling, and composting 
             in the state.

            2)Right Timing for New Policy Direction  .  With the elimination 
             of the Integrated Waste Management Board (IWMB) concerns 
             have been raised that the mission and direction of the 
             policies under the purview of the new DRRR are stagnate.  AB 


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             341 provides renewed policy direction that the new 
             department needs to focus on implementing its existing 
             legislatively mandated programs toward ensuring 75% 
             diversion.  This bill moves the state toward even more 
             aggressive diversion efforts that are necessary to 
             compensate for population growth and increases in per capita 
             generation of waste by requiring DRRR to ensure that by 
             2020, 75% of the solid waste generated is diverted from 
             landfill disposal.  This also represents a shift toward 
             statewide diversion efforts to complement the efforts 
             already being accomplished by local jurisdictions. 

            3)Regulations requiring commercial recycling  .  Under the 
             CGWSA, ARB must prepare and approve a scoping plan for 
             achieving the maximum technologically feasible and 
             cost-effective reductions in GHG emissions from sources or 
             categories of sources of GHGs by 2020.  According to the 
             ARB, the scoping plan "contains the main strategies 
             California will use to reduce GHGs] that cause climate 
             change.  The scoping plan has a range of GHG reduction 
             actions which include direct regulations, alternative 
             compliance mechanisms, monetary and non-monetary incentives, 
             voluntary actions, market-based mechanisms such as a 
             cap-and-trade system, and a CGWSA] program implementation 
             regulation to fund the program."

           The scoping plan identifies the solid waste sector as a 
             significant source of GHG emissions, and a scoping plan 
             measure to reduce GHG emissions in this sector includes 
             mandatory commercial recycling.  The mandatory commercial 
             recycling measure is expected to achieve a reduction in GHG 
             emissions of 5 million metric tons of carbon dioxide 

           The DRRR began workshops for the mandatory commercial 
             recycling measure rulemaking process in August 2009.  
             January 1, 2012, is the planned effective date of the 
             recycling regulation, and July 1, 2012, is the planned 
             effective date for jurisdictions and businesses to implement 
             the commercial recycling programs.  Some sources indicate 
             that these dates may be adjusted.

            4) Non-disposal Facility Element (NDFE)  .  A NDFE is one of a 


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              local jurisdiction's planning documents required by the 
              Act.  It identifies IWMB permitted "non-disposal" 
              facilities used by a jurisdiction to help reach the 
              diversion mandates.  Non-disposal facilities that require a 
              solid waste facility permit are primarily materials 
              recovery facilities (MRF) that accept mixed municipal solid 
              waste, compost facilities, and transfer stations.  A 
              jurisdiction's NDFE may also include other facilities not 
              defined as non-disposal facilities, such as recycling 
              centers and drop-off centers. 

             A jurisdiction must amend its NDFE when siting a new 
             non-disposal facility within its jurisdiction that was not 
             previously identified in its NDFE.  The NDFE is linked to 
             the solid waste permitting process by a conformance finding, 
             made first by the LEA for the county, and corroborated by 
             the DRRR.  A conformance finding is verification that the 
             location of a permitted disposal facility is identified in 
             the appropriate county's siting element or that a 
             non-disposal facility is identified in the appropriate NDFE.

            5)Changes to a Solid Waste Facility Permit  .  An operator of a 
             solid waste facility cannot make a significant change to 
             design or operation unless specified criteria are met and 
             approved by the LEA.  And, depending on the modification, 
             the IWMB must also approve the change.  This bill attempts 
             to clarify that if an operator is proposing changes to the 
             facility that are within the permitted parameters that those 
             changes would trigger a permit modification rather than a 
             full permit revision.  However, the language proposed in the 
             bill requires clarification to accomplish this.

            6)Related Legislation  .  

              a)   AB 818 (Blumenfeld) of 2011 enacts the Renters Right 
                to Recycle Act that requires a multifamily dwelling 
                owner, on and after July 1, 2010, to arrange for 
                recycling services that are appropriate and available for 
                the multifamily dwelling, consistent with state or local 
                law or requirements, including a local ordinance or 
                agreement applicable to the collection, handling, or 
                recycling of solid waste.  A "multifamily dwelling" is 
                defined as a residential facility consisting of five or 


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                more living units.

              b)   AB 479 (Chesbro) of 2009 (Senate Appropriations 
                Committee August 17, 2009, amendments applied the 
                commercial recycling requirements to multifamily 
                dwellings of 5 units or more) was held on the Committee's 
                suspense file; and AB 737 (Chesbro) was amended on the 
                Senate Floor September 4, 2009, to include the commercial 
                recycling and other provisions, and was re-referred to 
                the Senate Appropriations Committee, approved by the 
                Committee and the Senate, and vetoed by Governor 

              c)   SB 25 (Padilla) of 2009-10 increased the diversion 
                rate mandate for local jurisdictions for solid waste from 
                50% to 60% by 2015.  The bill mandates commercial 
                recycling for entities that generate more than 4 cubic 
                yards of solid waste per week.  This bill also made a 
                variety of changes to existing laws relating to permit 
                review, solid waste tipping fees, illegal dumping and 
                refuse service providers.  A June 28, 2010, hearing of 
                the Assembly Natural Resources Committee was canceled at 
                the author's request.

              d)   SB 1020 (Padilla) of 2007, required IWMB to develop a 
                plan to achieve a 75% statewide rate of solid waste 
                diversion from landfills and other disposal facilities by 
                January 1, 2020.  This bill was held in the Assembly 
                Appropriations Committee. 

            7)Amendment needed  .  The author has indicated that it is not 
             the intent of AB 341 to place further diversion requirements 
             on local governments. An amendment is needed to clarify that 
             the 75% diversion obligation is a statewide effort for DRRR 
             and does not place additional diversion responsibility on 
             local jurisdictions.  Also, due to conflicts with AB 818 
             (Blumenfield), AB 818 cannot be approved if AB 341 is 
             approved unless either:  a) the provisions of AB 818 are 
             replaced with the AB 341 commercial recycling provisions 
             (Public Resources Code 42649.1 and 42649.2); or b) a new 
             section is added to AB 341 (SEC. 11.5) striking a reference 
             to multifamily residential dwellings in 42649.2(a) that 
             would become law only if both bills are signed.


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            SOURCE  :        Californians Against Waste  

           SUPPORT  :       California League of Conservation Voters
                          Center for Biological Diversity
                          Ecology Action
                          Environment California
                          Planning and Conservation League
                          National Resources Defense Council
                          Sierra Club California
           OPPOSITION  :    County of Los Angeles Board of Supervisors
                          Los Angeles County Solid Waste Management 
                          Orange County Board of Supervisors