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House of Representatives
Session of 2019 - 2020 Regular Session


Posted: April 12, 2019 12:50 PM
From: Representative Patty Kim
To: All House members
Subject: Legislation Authorizing County Recycling and Waste Management Fees
For the last several decades, we have all been taught that recycling helps to reduce landfill waste, clean up our rivers and streams, and make our environment cleaner. Now, as recycling has become more and more expensive, counties are having trouble maintaining their recycling programs across the Commonwealth. With China’s recent decision to stop accepting certain recycled items and waste, the problem has only been exacerbated.

Prior to 2005, some counties established recycling and waste management fees, which were collected from waste haulers, to support county recycling programs. This practice ended with the Commonwealth Court’s decision in IESI PA Bethlehem Landfill Corporation vs. County of Lehigh. The Court ruled in this case that the collection of county recycling and waste management fees were unlawful because the fees were not authorized by state law.

To address this issue, I will be introducing legislation that would specifically authorize counties that have recycling programs to collect a recycling and waste management fee of up to $4 per ton. Counties would be able to use these funds to create and maintain new or existing recycling programs, programs to clean up illegal dumping sites or litter, and/or programs for alternative energy. It is time that we finally wake up and support counties’ efforts to be environmentally responsible.

Please join me in supporting this important legislation.

Introduced as HB1797