Chapter 7.08


7.08.010    Definitions – Use of words and phrases.

7.08.020    Disposal of solid wastes.

7.08.025    Solid waste collection from multifamily and commercial developments.

7.08.030    City manager may promulgate regulations.

7.08.040    License – Compliance with regulations.

7.08.050    Issuance of license.

7.08.060    License fee.

7.08.070    Information to be provided.

7.08.080    Bond – Insurance.

7.08.090    Revocation – Appeal.

7.08.100    Intention of chapter.

7.08.110    Unattended containers.

7.08.120    Enforcement by civil penalty – Appeal.

7.08.130    Additional enforcement remedies and penalties.

7.08.010 Definitions – Use of words and phrases.

As used in this chapter, unless the context or subject matter clearly requires otherwise, the words or phrases defined in this section shall have the indicated meanings.

“Garbage” includes:

(a) All accumulation of putrescible and nonputrescible waste matter that has been discarded by the owner thereof, including, but not limited to: ashes, cinders, trade waste, rags, bottles, papers, broken household furniture, dead animals not more than 20 pounds in weight, boxes, barrels, scraps of boards and lumber, hollow material or ware, rubbish in general; and

(b) All organic wastes except yard waste or extremely hazardous wastes, hazardous substance, or hazardous waste, as defined in DMMC 18.01.050; and

(c) Every accumulation of animal, fruit, or vegetable matter that attends the preparation, use, cooking, storage, or handling of food, including swill; except the definition of garbage specifically excludes manure, sewage, dead animals of more than 20 pounds in weight, automobile bodies, trees and limbs more than four inches in diameter, slaughterhouse waste, cleanings from public and private catchbasins, building materials, construction waste, landscaping waste, and the like, only in those instances where transportation of waste is effected by the property owner or property owner’s designee, and the transporting party is not an organization licensed by the Washington Utilities and Transportation Commission.

“Recyclable materials” means those products or materials that have useful physical or chemical properties after their intended use and can be diverted from the City’s solid waste stream for reuse, remanufacture, or use as a raw material in the manufacture of another product.

“Solid waste” means all putrescible and nonputrescible solid and semisolid wastes including, but not limited to, garbage, rubbish, ashes, industrial wastes, swill, demolition and construction wastes, abandoned vehicles or parts thereof, yard waste, and recyclable materials.

“Unattended container” means a temporary, semipermanent, or permanent container or receptacle for the collection of recyclable materials. Unattended containers are available for use by the general public and are not under the direct and continuous supervision of an on-site attendant. This definition shall not include receptacles for recyclable materials located on public property by a government agency for use by the public.

“Yard waste” means grass clippings, leaves, weeds, prunings, and similar plant materials from yards and gardens. Yard waste does not include food waste, plastics and synthetic fibers, lumber, any wood or tree limbs more than four inches in diameter, or soil contaminated with extremely hazardous or hazardous waste. [Ord. 1597 § 1, 2014: Ord. 993 § 14, 1992: Ord. 923 § 1, 1992: Ord. 663 § 1, 1986: Ord. 74 § 1, 1960.]

7.08.020 Disposal of solid wastes.

(1) It is unlawful and a civil offense with penalties as set forth in this chapter for any person to deposit, throw, or place within the city, or to dispose of garbage on private property by incineration; or to deposit, throw, or place any garbage upon any private property regardless of ownership unless the garbage is placed in a watertight container of a type approved by the city manager, fitted with a watertight cover which shall not be removed except when necessary for depositing or removal of garbage.

(2) Yard waste and scrap building materials may be burned at such times, places, and in such manner as may be permitted by local fire authorities and other governing agencies; who shall have the authority to promulgate reasonable regulations in connection therewith, including the right to prohibit such burning.

(3) It is unlawful and a civil offense with penalties as set forth in this chapter for any person to place yard waste, except minor noxious weeds inappropriate for composting, in any container which contains garbage or to place yard waste in disposable containers or bindings which are nonbiodegradable. Further, it is unlawful and a civil offense with penalties as set forth in this chapter to deposit, throw, or otherwise place yard waste upon another person’s private property or on public property within the city. Yard waste may be broken, cut up, and placed in bundles, which shall be securely tied with bindings made from natural materials, or in biodegradable boxes, cartons, or other receptacles reasonably easy to be handled and loaded by one person onto a collection vehicle; provided, however, that such boxes, cartons, or other receptacles shall not exceed 60 pounds in total weight. Special containers or receptacles may be used in connection with the disposal of garbage, recyclable materials, and yard waste as defined in DMMC 7.08.010 by special arrangement with the licensed collector. Except as allowed in this chapter, it is unlawful and a civil offense with penalties as set forth in this chapter for any can, bundle, or other solid waste receptacle to be placed upon any sidewalk or street, all such cans and containers shall be so secured as to render them inaccessible to animals. Solid waste receptacles may be placed at or near the edge of the right-of-way during the specified day of collection when such placement does not obstruct vehicular or pedestrian traffic. [Ord. 923 § 2, 1992: Ord. 74 § 2, 1960.]

7.08.025 Solid waste collection from multifamily and commercial developments.

All multifamily developments, except for planned unit developments of clustered single-family dwellings, and all commercial developments, including mixed-use developments shall subscribe for solid waste collection and disposal services. Except as otherwise regulated by RCW 70.95.903, such services shall be provided by a licensed hauler in compliance with local and state regulations. [Ord. 923 § 3, 1992.]

7.08.030 City manager may promulgate regulations.

The city manager, upon approval of the city council, may promulgate reasonable regulations for the collection, handling, transportation, and disposal of solid waste within the city, whether or not under licenses provided in this chapter. [Ord. 923 § 4, 1992: Ord. 74 § 3, 1960.]

7.08.040 License – Compliance with regulations.

No person shall engage in the business of route-based collection, handling, or transportation of garbage, yard waste, or recyclable materials, within the city, or of disposal of such garbage, yard waste, or recyclable materials either within or without the city without first obtaining a license therefor and agreeing to comply with such regulations as may be issued under the authority of this chapter; and further, without first obtaining such licenses, permits, or franchises, if any, which may be required by the state, or county, on account of licensee’s performance under his license with the city. Nonprofit organizations such as churches and civic groups, and those persons engaged in the transport and disposal of solid waste as a secondary and incidental activity to a lawful primary business activity, shall be exempt from this city license requirement. A violation of the provisions of this section shall constitute a civil offense with penalties as set forth in this chapter. [Ord. 923 § 5, 1992: Ord. 74 § 4, 1960.]

7.08.050 Issuance of license.

The city manager shall be authorized from time to time by the order of the city council to execute in the name of the city an exclusive or nonexclusive license to a particular person to collect, handle, transport, and/or dispose of garbage, yard waste, and recyclable materials not otherwise regulated by RCW 70.95.903 within one or more geographical areas within the city. Such license shall be granted upon such terms and conditions set forth by the order of the city council. [Ord. 1506 § 1, 2011: Ord. 923 § 6, 1992: Ord. 74 § 5, 1960.]

7.08.060 License fee.

The person, persons, or parties agreeing to accept a license for the collection of solid waste as specified in DMMC 7.08.050 shall pay to the city a license fee in an amount and method as specified in the license by the city council. Failure to pay such license fee shall constitute a violation of the terms of the license. [Ord. 923 § 7, 1992: Ord. 92 § 1, 1961: Ord. 74 § 6, 1960.]

7.08.070 Information to be provided.

(1) Written application to the city council for the license shall include all information requested by the city manager. Such information shall include, but not be limited to: the number, sizes, and types of equipment used and recyclables collected; proof of sufficient liability insurance; methods of disposal; collection schedules; anticipated costs to individual customers; relevant experience of personnel.

(2) License holders shall provide all information required under the license agreement within the time periods specified. The city manager may waive the requirements of this section when the application will renew an existing license. Failure to provide such information shall be considered a violation of the terms of the license. [Ord. 923 § 8, 1992: Ord. 92 § 2, 1961: Ord. 74 § 7, 1960.]

7.08.080 Bond – Insurance.

Before any such license takes effect, the licensee shall file with the city clerk and keep in full force and effect during the term of such license a bond approved as to form by the city attorney and as to surety by the city manager in the penal sum as specified in the license agreement conditioned upon the full and faithful performance by licensee of the terms and conditions of such license. Licensee shall indemnify, defend and hold harmless the city, its offices, agents, employees, and volunteers from any and all liability whatsoever from injury to or death of persons, or loss of or damage to property, caused by or arising out of activity under such license, including the acts and omissions of licensee and all of his officers, employees, and all of his agents, including any sublicensees and subcontractors. Licensee shall also appear and defend any action or suit instituted against the city arising in any manner out of the license. Licensee shall maintain at all such times insurance as required under the license agreement. Certificates of such insurance shall be filed with the city clerk, who shall be given 30 days’ advance notice by registered mail of any changes in or cancellation of such insurance. Failure to provide and maintain such bonding and insurance shall be considered a violation of the terms of the license. [Ord. 923 § 9, 1992: Ord. 96 § 1, 1961: Ord. 92 § 3, 1961: Ord. 74 § 8, 1960.]

7.08.090 Revocation – Appeal.

Such license shall be subject to cancellation or revocation based upon a determination by the city manager finding wilful or multiple violations of laws of the city or noncompliance with any provision of the license; provided, that any such determination may be appealed in accordance with hearing examiner procedures, currently codified in the hearing examiner code, by filing a written notice of appeal with the city clerk within 10 days of the decision of the city manager. [Ord. 923 § 10, 1992: Ord. 770 § 46, 1988: Ord. 74 § 9, 1960.]

7.08.100 Intention of chapter.

This chapter is intended to provide for the regulations of the business of garbage, yard waste, and recyclable materials collection, handling, transportation, and disposal, and to provide revenue for the general fund of the city. [Ord. 923 § 11, 1992: Ord. 74 § 10, 1960.]

7.08.110 Unattended containers.

No person shall place, display, or maintain any unattended container for collection of recyclable materials or donated items in any exterior location within the City except in conformance with all of the following provisions:

(1) Such unattended containers shall be located only within the parking area of private property lawfully zoned, developed, and used for commercial or industrial purposes or at schools, churches, or charitable organizations which have similar parking facilities. Such unattended containers shall not occupy on-site parking spaces required by Title 18 DMMC, or be located within the required front yard area of any property. Furthermore, such unattended containers shall not be located within any public right-of-way.

(2) Such unattended containers shall be located only with the permission of the property owner, his/her agent, or the person in possession of the property. The container owner’s name and current telephone number, the benefiting organization’s name and current telephone number, and the type of recyclable material or donation solicited shall be displayed thereon in a conspicuous location.

(3) Such unattended containers shall be located only with the permission of the Planning, Building and Public Works Director, who shall provide necessary application forms to requesting persons. Such unattended containers shall be screened as specified by DMMC 18.195.450 through 18.195.490. The Planning, Building and Public Works Director may waive all or portions of the requirements of DMMC 18.195.450 through 18.195.490 when such screening is determined to be unnecessary.

(4) Such unattended containers shall be inspected no less frequently than at two-week intervals by the container owner. All containers filled to capacity shall be promptly emptied. Container owners shall ensure that the vicinity of the container is free of litter. The placement of any material in or around the unattended container other than the material or materials intended by the container owner shall be deemed a violation of DMMC 7.08.020 and chapter 9.56 DMMC.

(5) Both the property owner and the container owner shall be responsible for compliance with the provisions of this section. Violations of the provisions of this section shall constitute a civil offense with penalties as set forth in this chapter. [Ord. 1597 § 2, 2014: Ord. 923 § 12, 1992.]

7.08.120 Enforcement by civil penalty – Appeal.

(1) Based on a citizen complaint or at the direction of the city manager or the city council, the city manager or his/her designee shall investigate any structure, container, use, or condition which is apparently in violation of this chapter, and if it is determined that a violation exists, the city manager or designee shall have a notice of violation served upon the owner, tenant, or other person responsible for the condition.

(2) The notice shall be served by personal service, registered mail, or certified mail with return receipt requested addressed to the last known address of the owner, tenant, or other person responsible. The notice of violation shall be posted at a conspicuous place on the property. The notice shall state separately each violation, contain a reasonable time for compliance, describe the civil penalties for failure to comply, and the appeal procedures.

(3) When calculating a reasonable time for compliance, the city manager or designee shall take into consideration the following criteria:

(a) Type and degree of violation; and

(b) Intent to comply if intent has been expressed; and

(c) Procedural requirements for obtaining a permit to carry out corrective action; and

(d) Complexity of corrective action; and

(e) Any other circumstances beyond the control of the responsible party.

(4) The city manager or designee may extend the date of compliance upon the receipt of a written request from the responsible person prior to the date of compliance.

(5) Any person affected by a notice of violation may file a written notice of appeal stating in what respects the notice is erroneous and the specific grounds for reversal or modification of the order. The appeal shall be filed with the city clerk prior to 4:30 p.m. on the compliance date. In the absence of a timely appeal, the findings of the city manager or designee contained in the notice of violation shall be deemed true and final.

(6) Jurisdiction is granted to the hearing examiner to hear and determine such appeals in accordance with the hearing examiner code. The hearing examiner may affirm, reverse, or modify the notice of the city manager or designee; provided, that the notice of the city manager or designee shall be deemed to be prima facie correct and the burden of establishing the contrary shall be upon the appellant.

(7) In addition to any other sanction or remedial procedure which may be available, any person failing to comply with a final order of the city manager or designee, or in the event of an appeal, the hearing examiner or city council, shall be subject to a cumulative penalty or forfeiture in the amount of $25.00 per day for each violation from the date set for compliance in the final order until the order is complied with; provided, however, the rate of daily penalty shall double every six months, with a maximum daily penalty of $200.00 per day for single-family residential and suburban estate zones, $300.00 per day for commercial zones, and $500.00 per day for multiple residential zones, except that owners of a single condominium unit shall be subject to a maximum daily penalty of $200.00; and provided further, that the maximum cumulative penalty shall not exceed the greater of $10,000 or the then fair-market value of the property on the date the violation or violations are perceived to exist; and finally; provided, that the property owner shall be allowed to claim a 10-day grace period from such daily penalties once in any five-year period. Jurisdiction is granted to the Des Moines Municipal Court to hear and determine applications for judgment, and following entry of judgment, if any, the city shall pursue collection thereof in any manner otherwise available for the collection of judgments. [Ord. 923 § 13, 1992.]

7.08.130 Additional enforcement remedies and penalties.

(1) Remedies Cumulative. The remedies provided for herein for failure to comply with this chapter shall be cumulative and in addition to any other remedy at law or equity.

(2) Civil Infraction. A violation of or failure to comply with this chapter is a class 1 civil infraction and the city may enforce this chapter and seek fines and penalties in accordance with the provisions of chapter 1.24 DMMC.

(3) Separate Offense. Each day upon which a violation of this chapter occurs constitutes a separate offense. [Ord. 1381 § 1, 2006.]


For provisions of state law on garbage collection, see RCW 35A.21.060 and 35.21.120 et seq.