State Law Forcing Residents To Engage In Increasingly Differentiated Refuse Separation

Many county residents, particularly those living in the more remote parts of the 20,105-square mile expanse are making a needed but rough adjustment to the restrictions and limitations contained in Senate Bill 1383, which took effect on January 1 of this year.
In the county’s mountain region, the impact of SB 1383 was not initially noticed, as the winter storms that were particularly intense, resulting in what is now referred to as “the Blizzard of ‘23,” blanketed the mountain communities in snow, preventing, or obviating the need for, the disposal of what is normally referred to greenwaste. The proper handling of Greenwaste and its vectoring to a what is considered to be a proper repository is a primary issue in SB 1383.
Referred to as California’s Short-Lived Climate Pollutant Reduction Law, SB 1383, passed in 2016, established methane reduction targets for California. It calls for goals toward reducing and ultimately eliminating the disposal of organic waste in landfills, including greenwaste and edible food. The bill’s purpose is to reduce greenhouse gas emissions, such as methane, ensuring that food scraps and greenwaste are composted and compost is purchased by cities. SB 1383 was put into place because landfilling organic waste is a significant source of local air quality pollutants.
While SB 1383 mandate to recycle organic food waste has yet to go into effect, the redirection of greenwaste – grass cuttings, tree trimmings, plant prunings and the like – to use as compost has gone into effect.
The enforcement of the SB 1383 limitations has fallen to the county’s division of special districts and its constituent county service areas, as well as to the county’s franchised trash a haulers.
Burrtec Industries has trash-hauling franchises in the six largest of San Bernardino County’s 24 cities – San Bernardino, Fontana, Ontario, Rancho Cucamonga, Victorville and Rialto. The company also has franchises in ten of the county’s other municipalities – Apple Valley, Twentynine Palms, Yucca Valley, Yucaipa, Adelanto, Upland, Grand Terrace, Redlands, Montclair and Barstow. Additionally, it is the franchised garbage handler in the unincorporated San Bernardino County communities of Amboy, Angeles Oaks, Yermo, Victorville, Valley of Enchantment, Twin Peaks, Arrowbear, Baker, Barton Flats, Bloomington, Blue Jay, Skyforest, Silver Lakes, Cedar Glen, Cedarpines Park, Cima, Crestline, Daggett, Del Rosa, Devore, Dumont Dunes, El Rancho Verde, Forest Falls, Fort Irwin, San Antonio Heights, Running Springs, Nipton, Oak Glen, Newberry Springs, Mount Baldy, Mountain Pass, Haloran, Helendale, Hinkley, Kelso, Lake Arrowhead, Lenwood, Landers, Lucerne Valley, Ludlow and Mentone.Athens Services holds the prestigious position of managing the county’s landfills but does not have any major trash hauling franchises in San Bernardino County.
Waste Management yet has the trash disposal franchise in Chino, Chino Hills and the unincorporated communities of Trona, Kramer Junction, Red Mountain, Boron, Windy Acres and Four Corners in San Bernardino County. With the addition of the Chino Hills contract,
Republic Services has the trash hauling franchises for the City of Colton and two unincorporated communities in the eastern Mojave Desert.
While many of the county’s residents elsewhere have learned about and adjusted to the restrictions inherent in Short-Lived Climate Pollutant Reduction Law, many of those living in County Service Area 70 R-5 Sugarloaf, CSA 70 R-33 Big Bear City, County Service Area 53B Fawnskin, County Service Area 68 in Crestline, County Service Area 69 in Lake Arrowhead, County Service Area 70 R-7 in Lake Arrowhead, County Service Area 70 D1 in MacKay Park, County Service Area 18 in Cedarpines Park, County Service Area 70 R-9 in Upper North Bay, Lake Arrowhead, County Service Area 68 in Valley of the Moon, County Service Area 70 R-22 in Twin Peaks, County Service Area 70 R-2 in the Strawberry Lodge Area, County Service Area 79 in Green Valley Lake, County Service Area 73 in Arrowbear, County Service Area 70 R-31 in Lytle Creek and County Service Area 70 S-3 Lytle Creek are only beginning to now in the aftermath of the snow drifts having melted.
One of the provisions of SB 1383 is that households and businesses can no longer dispose of grass and vegetation clippings, leaves, tree branches and limbs, logs, pine cones, chaparral, bushes or plants in their trash bins.
Consequently, trash haulers and San Bernardino County Community Services District employees over the last two to three weeks have made a point of leaving those trash bins containing visible greenwaste uncollected. In most cases, they would affix a red tag to the trash bin, informing the resident or business owner that the trash was not being picked up because the bin’s or bins’ content was inconsistent with SB 1383.
According to the San Bernardino County Community Services District administration, about seven to eight months ago, residents of the county’s various community services districts were provided with notices of the new regulations.
SB 1383 puts the burden of keeping the trash stream that is headed to landfills on the customers of the trash haulers and not the trash companies, which are not just at liberty to not collect trash from garbage bins with greenwaste in them but are required to do so.
The San Bernardino County Community Services District division charges the residents of the various community services districts varying amounts, the least of which is $293.32 for what is mandatory trash collection. Some major generator’s of trash pay more. In addition, the residents of community service districts are charged another $85, which allows them to take trash on their own to the county transfer stations.
Under previous regulations, refuse was to be divided into garbage/trash and recyclable materials in separate bins curbside upon pick-up, so that when it arrived at the transfer stations or MRFs (an acronym pronounced “murf” signifying, variously materials recovery facility, materials reclamation facility, materials recycling facility or multi re-use facility) it was in separate trucks and could be disposed of as either landfill-bound refuse or, in the case of the recyclables, be further separated as glass, plastics, metal, cardboard or other reusables and sent on to facilities that could recycle them. SB 1383 intensifies that separation requirement into what is now three categories – trash, recyclables and greenwaste. Thus, instead of two types of bins – what was formerly a black bin for trash and a blue bin for recyclables – a third bin, a green one for greenwaste, are to be available for curbside pick-up. Ultimately, a fourth category will be added, that being organic food waste, which will require a fourth bin curbside. The contents of the greenwaste bin and organic food waste bin will be shunted to composting facilities.
Residents of community facilities districts can forego disposing of their greenwaste, if they wish, by retaining on their property. If they wish to get rid of it at present and going forward in the future, they are precluded from putting it into their trash bins or recycling bins and must instead purchase a greenwaste bin, at a cost of $234.01 per year or, in the alternative if they do not anticipate using the service from November to March, a seasonal greenwaste disposal permit for $172.41. In the case of greenwaste disposal, collection is not weekly but once every two weeks.
Video systems are being incorporated onto trash truck as a quality control means of ensuring that recyclables, greenwaste and, in the near future, organic food waste is placed into the proper disposal stream.

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