Chapter 6.12
SOLID WASTE*

*    Editor’s Note: Prior history includes: prior code Sections 5100-5114, Ord. NS 623, Ord. NS 675, and Ords. 73-17, 80-41, 85-51, 88-34 and 89-18.

    For statutory provisions relating to garbage regulation by cities, see Gov. Code §§ 54309 and 54350. See also Health & Safety Code § 4100 et. seq.

Sections:

6.12.010    Definitions.

6.12.020    General provisions.

6.12.030    Collections.

6.12.035    Scavenging prohibited.

6.12.040    Receptacles.

6.12.050    Storage of receptacles.

6.12.060    Permitting litter to collect.

6.12.070    Collection vehicles.

6.12.080    Solid waste on streets prohibited.

6.12.090    Landfill fees.

6.12.100    Collection fees.

6.12.110    Billings.

6.12.120    Penalties for delinquency, nonpayment and violation of this chapter.

6.12.130    Burying solid wastes prohibited.

6.12.140    Composting permitted.

6.12.150    Burning of solid wastes.

6.12.160    Disposal by individual producer.

6.12.170    Rules.

6.12.180    Unacceptable wastes.

6.12.010 DEFINITIONS.

For the purpose of this chapter, certain words and phrases shall be construed as herein set forth, unless it is apparent from the context that a different meaning is intended.

(a)    “Acceptable wastes” means any waste material which can be collected, landfilled or recycled in accordance with good standard practices and/or local, state and federal law describing what materials may be accepted at the city’s sanitary landfill.

(b)    “Ash” means residue from burning of combustible materials.

(c)    “Bulky waste” means oversize waste, including but not limited to large discarded materials; appliances, furniture, junked automobile parts, large tree branches, stumps, and concrete rubble.

(d)    “Commercial waste” means waste typically generated by businesses, office buildings, stores, markets, theaters and similar establishments engaged in commerce.

(e)    “Combustible waste” means the organic content of solid waste, including paper, cardboard, cartons; wood, boxes, excelsior, plastic, textiles, bedding, leather, rubber, paints, yard trimmings, leaves, and household waste all of which will burn.

(f)    “Domestic refuse” (household solid waste) means waste originating from a residential unit, and consisting of paper, cans, bottles, food wastes and may include yard and garden waste.

(g)    “Food waste” (garbage) means animal and vegetable discards from handling, storage, sale, preparation, cooking and serving of foods.

(h)    “Hazardous waste” means any waste material, or combination thereof, which poses a substantial present or potential hazard to human health or living organisms because such wastes are nondegradable or persistent in nature or because they can be biologically magnified, or because they can be lethal, or because they may otherwise cause or tend to cause detrimental cumulative effects. Hazardous waste includes, but is not limited to, explosives, pathological wastes, radioactive materials and chemicals which may be harmful to the public during normal storage, collection or disposal cycle, hazardous materials contained in consumer products packaged for distribution to and used by the general public, and any other materials defined as hazardous waste by state or federal law or regulation.

(i)    “Industrial waste” means discarded waste materials from industrial processes and/or manufacturing operations.

(j)    “Infectious waste” (pathological waste) means waste materials from a medical facility, veterinarian facility, hospital or laboratory which may contain pathogens or other disease-infected wastes.

(k)    “Litter” means solid wastes that are scattered about in a careless manner.

(l)    “Noncombustible waste” means inorganic content of solid waste, including glass, metal, tin cans, foils, dirt, gravel, brick, ceramics, crockery and ashes.

(m)    “Producer” means every municipal utilities customer of the city of Santa Cruz, regardless of the volume of solid waste produced.

(n)    “Recyclables” means materials which can be separated from the wastestream, collected and processed so that they may be used again as a raw material for products which may or may not be similar to the original.

(o)    “Rubbish” means a term for nonfood waste materials collected from residences, commercial establishments and institutions, consisting of cans, paper, glass, magazines, packaging materials, brick, or wood.

(p)    “Rubble” means rough stones of irregular shape and size, broken from larger masses either naturally or artificially, as by weathering action or by demolition of buildings, pavements, roads, etc.

(q)    “Sanitary landfill” means a site where solid waste is disposed using sanitary landfilling techniques prescribed by local, state and federal authorities in the interests of the public health and protection of the environment.

(r)    “Solid waste” means any and all matter and materials which are rejected, abandoned, or discarded by the owners or producers thereof as offensive or useless, or no longer desired by the owners or producers thereof, and which by their presence or accumulation may injuriously affect the health, comfort or safety of the community by increasing disease or hazard by fire.

(s)    “Sludge” means a semiliquid sediment, resulting from the accumulation of settleable organic/inorganic solids deposited from wastewaters or other fluids in tanks or basins.

(t)    “Street refuse” means material collected by manual and mechanical sweeping of streets and sidewalks, litter from public litter receptacles and dirt removed from catchbasins.

(u)    “Toxic waste” means waste that causes unnatural genetic activity, has the potential for bioaccumulation in tissue, or could cause acute and chronic toxicity to various organisms, including humans.

(v)    “Unacceptable wastes” means any waste material which cannot be collected, landfilled or recycled in accordance with good standard practices or local, state and federal law prescribing what materials may be accepted at the city’s sanitary landfill. These wastes may include but not be limited to hazardous, infectious or toxic wastes and other noxious wastes such as ash, broken glass, dust, sawdust, kitty litter and loose fiberglass.

(w)    “White goods” means discarded kitchen and other large appliances, such as washing machines, and refrigerators.

(x)    “Yard waste” means plant clippings, prunings, grass clippings and leaves, and other discarded material from yards and gardens.

(Ord. 2012-12 § 1, 2012: Ord. 90-02 § 1 (part), 1990).

6.12.020 GENERAL PROVISIONS.

All acceptable wastes shall be removed, collected and disposed of by city forces except as provided in Section 6.12.160 and every person producing solid wastes shall cause the same to be collected by the city, its authorized agents or other qualified operative as provided by the municipal code.

The city shall also operate a curbside recycling collection program which shall be under the operational control of the director of public works and shall endeavor to meet or exceed annual recycling goals prescribed by local and state authority.

(Ord. 90-02 § 1 (part), 1990).

6.12.030 COLLECTIONS.

Collections of acceptable waste and recyclables will be made at least once each week in accordance with a schedule which is maintained by the director of public works. Producers of bulky, commercial, food and industrial wastes may be collected more often as provided by the schedule of the director of public works. It shall be the responsibility of the producer to place receptacles in a manner which facilitates collection by city forces in a safe and sanitary manner. Producers shall also bear the responsibility of knowing the date and approximate time of collections by city forces so that missed pickups are avoided.

It shall be the responsibility of the producer to insure that recyclables are separated from solid wastes and that source separation of recyclables is performed so that glass, aluminum, newspaper, and other classes of recyclables as may be identified by the director of public works in the future, can be picked up separately by collection crews.

(Ord. 95-14 § 1, 1995: Ord. 90-02 § 1 (part), 1990).

6.12.035 SCAVENGING PROHIBITED.

No person shall scavenge or otherwise remove salvage, or remove any materials whatsoever from solid waste or recyclables set out for collection in accordance with this chapter. Solid wastes and recyclables set out for collection are the property and responsibility of the city of Santa Cruz or its duly authorized agent. No person shall purchase recycling materials from any other person who has removed such materials from a designated recyclables container or receptacle, in violation of this section, where the prospective purchaser knows or reasonably should know that such materials were illegally obtained.

(Ord. 95-14 § 2, 1995).

6.12.040 RECEPTACLES.

(a)    Except for producers using city-issued roll-out carts, every producer of acceptable waste shall have a galvanized or plastic solid waste receptacle of not more than thirty-two-gallons capacity. Heavy duty plastic yard bags of at least thirty-gallon capacity tightly closed and placed adjacent to the approved plastic or galvanized container on pickup day may be used for extra pickup in accordance with the rate schedule adopted by the city council by resolution. Each container or receptacle shall be watertight, have a tight-fitting cover and shall be kept clean and closed to promote safety and a sanitary condition. Each container or receptacle shall be equipped with two bails or handles each opposed from one another at or near the top of the container.

(b)    To facilitate safe handling by city collection crews, containers and receptacles shall be set out at the curb for collection in accordance with the schedule maintained by the director of public works, and shall not exceed a total of sixty-five pounds per each when fully loaded, except that city-issued roll-out carts may contain up to one hundred thirty pounds when fully loaded. No unacceptable waste, as defined in subsections (h), (j), (s), (u) and (v) of Section 6.12.010, shall be deposited in refuse cans and containers. Noxious waste such as ash, kitty litter, loose fiberglass, dust, sawdust and disposable diapers, shall be disposed of in accordance with the good standard practices as required by the sanitation division.

(c)    Containers or receptacles for recyclables shall be provided by the city and shall be maintained by the producer in a clean and serviceable condition. Containers for recyclables shall remain the property of the city of Santa Cruz. All containers or receptacles for recyclables shall be posted on at least two sides with the following notice:

CITY OF SANTA CRUZ

WARNING

The recyclable materials in this container are part of the City of Santa Cruz Recycling Program

Any person who removes recyclable materials from this container shall be guilty of a misdemeanor and may be subject to civil penalties of up to one thousand dollars ($1,000.00). SCMC 6.12.120

(d)    It will not be the duty of the public works department to collect or pick up acceptable wastes or recyclables of any type which are not placed in an approved container or receptacle and/or not placed for collection in accordance with this chapter. Producers whose solid wastes or recyclables are not collected because of use of unapproved receptacles or improper placement of the receptacle on collection day shall correct such problems, arrange for special pickups, or haul their own solid wastes or recyclables to the city landfill.

(e)    In the event the solid waste from any producer is of such volume that thirty-two gallon receptacles are not feasible, the city will provide special containers for a rental fee which is set periodically by the city council in the solid waste rate resolution. Special containers not owned by the city may be used under certain conditions when approved by the director of public works.

(Ord. 95-14 § 3, 1995: Ord. 90-02 § 1 (part), 1990).

6.12.050 STORAGE OF RECEPTACLES.

Containers or receptacles must be stored in a manner which facilitates a safe and sanitary condition and which does not impose a barrier to efficient and physically safe collection by city collection crews as determined by the director of public works. All receptacles or containers shall be stored in a manner as to prevent their contents from being scattered or carried by wind or water in a fashion which causes the accumulation of litter or an unsightly, unsafe or unsanitary condition to exist.

All containers or receptacles containing acceptable wastes or recyclables produced by any commercial or industrial establishment shall be placed for collection at a convenient and accessible place on the premises of the producer, unless special permission is obtained from the director of public works to place the containers or receptacles on public property.

Development permit applications for all industrial, institutional, commercial, professional office and residential developments having more than two units in each structure shall be reviewed by the director of public works to assure that sufficient space is provided in accordance with this section.

In all cases of dispute or complaints concerning the place where refuse or receptacles shall be placed while awaiting the removal of their contents and the same is not specifically fixed by this chapter, the director of public works shall forthwith designate the place and such decision shall be final.

(Ord. 90-02 § 1 (part), 1990).

6.12.060 PERMITTING LITTER TO COLLECT.

It shall be unlawful for any person owning or occupying any building, lot or premises in the city of Santa Cruz to suffer, allow or permit litter to collect and remain upon such property.

(Ord. 90-02 § 1 (part), 1990).

6.12.070 COLLECTION VEHICLES.

The body of any vehicle used for the collection of solid waste or recyclables shall be metal-lined and shall be constructed so as to prevent the contents from falling or spilling therefrom, and shall be provided with a cover or covers satisfactory to the director of public works. Every vehicle used in the collection of solid waste and recyclables shall be well-painted, and shall be kept in a clean and sanitary condition, and shall be properly marked in a conspicuous place to show its classification, identification, and number. The collectors shall transfer the contents of all containers into the vehicle which will be covered when passing through the city streets and when not in the process of collecting. Collections shall not be spilled on stairs, walks, yards, or streets and shall in all cases be delivered to the city sanitary landfill, delivery to be made on the same day that collection is made.

(Ord. 90-02 § 1 (part), 1990).

6.12.080 SOLID WASTE ON STREETS PROHIBITED.

No person shall deposit any solid waste or recyclables upon any city right-of-way, street or other public place except for the purpose of collection in accordance with the stipulations of this chapter.

(Ord. 90-02 § l, 1990).

6.12.090 LANDFILL FEES.

An individual resident of the city of Santa Cruz may haul acceptable wastes and recyclables to the sanitary landfill and may dispose of such acceptable wastes and recyclables at the sanitary landfill or recycling center in accordance with the instructions of the landfill attendant and may be charged a fee for solid waste disposal in accordance with the rate schedule adopted by the city council by resolution.

All others hauling acceptable wastes and recyclables to the sanitary landfill in accordance with Section 6.12.160, including but not limited to self-haulers, building, engineering or specialty contractors and producers of commercial, industrial and bulky wastes, rubbish, rubble, white goods or yard waste may dispose of such wastes as directed by the landfill attendant and may be charged a fee for solid waste disposal in accordance with the rate schedule adopted by the city council by resolution.

(Ord. 90-02 § 1 (part), 1990).

6.12.100 COLLECTION FEES.

Fees for collection of acceptable wastes of any nature pursuant to this chapter, and for the rental or use of special containers provided by the city, shall be established by the city council by resolution.

(Ord. 90-02 § 1 (part), 1990).

6.12.110 BILLINGS.

The fees and charges provided for by this chapter shall be rendered at the end of each billing period in accordance with the provisions of Chapter 16.13 of this code.

(Ord. 90-02 § 1 (part), 1990).

6.12.120 PENALTIES FOR DELINQUENCY, NONPAYMENT AND VIOLATION OF THIS CHAPTER.

The penalties set forth in this section are in addition to those provided for in Chapter 1.08 of this code.

(a)    In the event that any account becomes delinquent, or any billing is not paid, or any person or persons subject to this chapter violate any of its provisions related to fees, penalties may be assessed in accordance with Chapter 16.13 of this code.

(b)    Violations of Section 6.12.035 shall be deemed a separate offense for each such container or receptacle from which recyclable materials are removed. The city attorney shall have the discretion to prosecute any such act as either a misdemeanor or an infraction in accordance with Section 1.08.010 of this code. In addition, any person who violates Section 6.12.035 shall be liable for civil penalties of not more than $1,000.00, or treble damages as measured by the value of the material removed, whichever is greater, for each violation.

(Ord. 95-14 § 4, 1995: Ord. 90-02 § 1, 1990).

6.12.130 BURYING SOLID WASTES PROHIBITED.

No person shall bury solid wastes at any place in the city for whatever purpose. This section shall not be interpreted in a way which prohibits composting as permitted in Section 6.12.140.

(Ord. 90-02 § l, 1990).

6.12.140 COMPOSTING PERMITTED.

Individual residents of the city of Santa Cruz may conduct home composting for the production of compost or mulch for other than commercial purposes or resale to the public. Composting techniques used shall be in accordance with good standard practices developed for the purposes of minimizing offensive odors and controlling pests. Meat, bones, grease, dairy products and human, dog, cat or other nonfarm animal feces shall not be composted.

(Ord. 90-02 § 1 (part), 1990).

6.12.150 BURNING OF SOLID WASTES.

The burning of all solid wastes shall be prohibited except as permitted by Article II of the Uniform Fire Code.

(Ord. 90-02 § 1 (part), 1990).

6.12.160 DISPOSAL BY INDIVIDUAL PRODUCER.

(a)    A producer may only collect, remove and dispose of, or cause to be collected, removed and disposed of, solid waste and recyclables created or produced on producer’s premises or on premises under producer’s control. All such collection, removal and disposal activities shall be carried out only by the producer personally, or by the producer’s regularly employed personnel carried on the producer’s payroll records as employees. Said solid waste and recyclables may only be collected, removed and disposed of pursuant to the stipulations set forth in this section and elsewhere within the city code.

(b)    A producer who is an owner or occupant of a residence may cause acceptable wastes and recyclables produced on the premises to be collected and disposed of by an independent contractor or by a person employed by said owner or occupant. Such acceptable wastes and recyclables shall be collected and disposed of only pursuant to the stipulations set forth in this section and elsewhere within the city code.

(c)    Placement or use of roll-off boxes, dumpsters, debris boxes and other containers is prohibited unless such roll-off box, dumpster, debris box or other container is situated at all times while on site on the vehicle which transports it.

(d)    Acceptable wastes and recyclables shall be disposed of only at a lawfully approved disposal area or sanitary landfill and shall be transported thereto only in a manner which will preclude the littering of public and private property and as otherwise provided by city code.

(e)    Removal and disposal of acceptable wastes and recyclables by a producer shall not relieve producer, or any other person, from the obligation and liability imposed by this chapter for the payment of the minimum solid waste collection and disposal rates established by the city.

(f)    Individual producers of acceptable wastes and recyclables which average over the course of the preceding twelve-month period in excess of fifty cubic yards per month are eligible to request the approval of the director of public works for authorization to self-haul such acceptable wastes and recyclables as are created or produced within the city limits and upon the property of the producer. Such authorization shall be consistent with the applicable terms and conditions set forth in this chapter and elsewhere which govern collection, receptacles, storage of receptacles, litter, collection vehicles, fees, billings, penalties for delinquency, nonpayment or violations, burying wastes, burning, rules set by the director and unacceptable wastes.

Such authorization may be modified or revoked by the director of public works with at least sixty calendar days’ written notice, subsequent to the director’s findings of a significant change in the conditions of the producer’s self-haul operation or of evidence of violation of the stipulations of state, county or city health and sanitation laws.

It is the city’s intent to prohibit the contract, lease or assignment of the authorization to self-haul acceptable wastes described in this section to other than the producer’s own forces.

(Ord. 2003-07 § 1, 2003: Ord. 90-02 § 1 (part), 1990).

6.12.170 RULES.

The director of public works shall have power to establish rules and regulations not inconsistent with this chapter, governing the collection and disposal of acceptable wastes and recyclables; provided, that such rules and regulations shall have as their purpose the enforcement of the provisions of this chapter and the health and sanitary laws and ordinances in effect in the city.

(Ord. 90-02 § 1 (part), 1990).

6.12.180 UNACCEPTABLE WASTES.

(a)    It is unlawful to place or permit placement of the following materials and unacceptable wastes in refuse, recycling or greenwaste carts or containers for collection by the city or into loads taken to the city resource recovery facility for processing or disposal:

(1)    Volatile materials including, but not limited to, petroleum distillates, such as gasoline, and alcohol;

(2)    Hazardous wastes as defined in Section 6.12.010(h);

(3)    Infectious wastes as defined in Section 6.12.010(j);

(4)    Sludge as defined in Section 6.12.010(s);

(5)    Toxic wastes as defined in Section 6.12.010(u).

(Ord. 2012-12 § 2, 2012: Ord. 90-02 § 1 (part), 1990).