Local Government Recycling Program and Infrastructure Funding and Financing Mechanisms

Local Sources of Funding and Financing

  • Local disposal tipping fees provide funding for diversion programs administered by CalRecycle and local jurisdictions. Tipping fees are generally used to fund daily operational and closure costs of a landfill but may also be used to fund recycling programs, litter abatement, public education efforts, and other programs.
    • A local tipping fee can encourage certain practices or discourage others.
    • For example, the disposal tipping fee for compostable organic materials can be set at a much higher rate than that set by the composting facility. This would act as an incentive for haulers to bring these materials to a compost facility rather than a landfill.
  • Landfill Tipping Fees in California, a 60-page CalRecycle report, discusses complexity and variation in local, regional, and statewide landfill tipping fees based on posted “self-haul” rates and compares California to other states and the European Union.
    • Comparisons are made for both MSW and green waste fees.
    • The report also provides spatial analysis for California MSW tipping fee data by region and by:
      • Ownership (public/private)
      • Disposal tonnage
      • Rural/urban location and
      • Proximity to other landfills. 
  • Differential fee structures can be used to incentivize products and manufacturing processes.
  • The Institute for Local Government, CalRecycle, and advisory committee members from throughout the solid waste industry published:
  • As part of the informal rulemaking process for SB 1383 (Lara, Chapter 395, Statutes of 2016) Short-Lived Climate Pollutants (SLCP), the October 30, 2017 workshop included a panel of speakers addressing funding programs and rate increases.
    • Watch a YouTube video of the recorded webcast (the discussion on this topic begins at 1:50:00)
      • Review a PDF of the slides in the first presentation given by Rob Hilton of HF&H Consultants. 
      • Transcript, using Microsoft Indexer (From the top left menu choose “Timeline”, from top right menu choose “View”, and then “Accessibility” to see the transcript).

State Sources of Funding and Financing

  • Integrated Waste Management Account Disposal Tipping Fee. CalRecycle’s current maximum tipping fee of $1.40 per ton took effect on July 1, 2001. State law (AB 1220 [Eastin] Chapter 656, Statutes of 1993) caps the tipping fee at this level. The current fee of $1.40 per ton is so low as to offer little disincentive to landfilling. In the past, attempts to raise the tipping fee have been defeated (e.g., AB 1610, Nunez). In the event the tipping fee is increased, one option for these funds is developing a grant program that would provide new incentives for diversion activities.
  • CalRecycle cosponsored facility-financing seminars with the California Resource Recovery Association (CRRA) on January 29, 2015 (Oakland, CA) and February 25, 2015 (Lakewood, CA). Financing for recycling facilities were discussed, including tax-exempt bonds, grants, or loans from California Pollution Control Financing Authority (CPCFA), California Infrastructure and Economic Development Bank (IBank), and CalRecycle.
  • Low Carbon Transportation Investments and Air Quality Improvement Program
  • California Statewide Communities Development Authority
  • California Department of Housing and Community Development Block Grant Program

Where to Go for Help

If you have additional questions about these topics, please contact local assistance staff.