OCEANSIDE — Oceanside is becoming greener — that much was reflected in an update made to its waste and recycling code on Feb. 1.
Code changes align with the city’s current waste practices and rigorous recycling.
“All customers, residential, commercial, large and small, are required to have recycling and green waste services,” Colleen Foster, city senior management analyst, said. “The new code update provides greater guidance on minimum standards for customers.”
Code updates spell out the required number of bins for multifamily dwellings, and ensure all residents have access to recycling containers.
Changes also address recycling obstacles for small businesses. Commercial cart services for small businesses now consist of a 96-gallon landfill cart and a 96-gallon recycling cart.
Previous commercial cart services provided two landfill carts, and charged an extra fee for a recycling cart, which take away incentives for recycling.
Additionally the code spells out penalties for not recycling. However education, and incentivized recycling rates are used as first steps to encourage compliance.
Foster said residents and business owners are support of city recycling efforts, and recognize that they make economic and environmental sense.
When customers mix trash and recycling inside bins, the city notifies the customer and points them to correct services. This usually resolves the issue.
“The city’s intention is to be proactive through education and outreach first and foremost,” Foster said. “Our rate systems incentivize recycling services over landfilling, making enforcement in most cases unnecessary.”
This month’s trash and recycling code updates are the first to be made in two years. The last code amendments were made in August 2012, following a new franchise agreement with Waste Management.
Those changes reflected the new automated collection services and cart systems, and state mandates at that time.
That is also when rates were adjusted to incentivize recycling and green waste recycling.
At the same time city administration of waste and recycling switched from the Community Service Department to the Water Utilities Department, in order to allow community outreach through city utility billing.
Recycling services first began over two decades ago.
In the early years occasional recycling waivers were granted, but no waivers have been active for the past five years.
Recent code updates also eliminate rules that are obsolete.