Jurisdictions have found that it helps to have a phase-in period before implementing a construction and demolition (C&D) diversion ordinance to provide time to educate your staff on how to implement the ordinance (if you haven’t already done so), and to inform contractors about the ordinance and its requirements. This can help to facilitate greater compliance with diversion requirements and a smoother implementation of your overall C&D ordinance. The San Jose ordinance is one example of a program that has a phase-in period. Providing handouts on available diversion facilities, cost comparisons of recycling facilities versus disposal, etc., at this time would also be helpful.
The kind of education and training you will need to provide staff will depend on what sections you include in the ordinance. For example:
- If you require a deposit, you will need to develop a procedure for handling deposits, and you will need to decide what form of payment will be acceptable (e.g., cash, certificate of deposit, surety bond, etc.). You will also need to establish procedures for returning deposits, and for handling any appeals should a non-returned deposit be contested.
- If you require a particular diversion rate but also allow for a reduced rate based on the feasibility of attaining that rate, you will need to establish criteria and train the person reviewing applications for a reduced diversion requirement on how to evaluate such applications. For example, they will need to be trained to recognize which projects are likely to result in non-divertable hazardous materials, like lead-based painted wood.
- If you require that estimates of anticipated materials to be generated, disposed or diverted be included in a waste management plan (WMP) as a condition of a permit, you will also need to train the person who will be reviewing WMPs on how to evaluate the estimates. Estimates can vary from jurisdiction to jurisdiction, depending on size and project type. Consult with your local construction companies for accurate estimations of C&D waste generated by project type/size.
- If you require weight tickets to demonstrate compliance with a particular diversion rate, you could simplify the process by establishing a recycling facility certification program. The City of San Jose has developed a certification process for the C&D diversion facilities in their area, which is explained on their Construction and Demolition Recycling web page. Basically, a contractor only has to document taking their waste material to one of the facilities that the City has already certified recycles incoming C&D materials at a particular rate.
- If you establish thresholds for determining which projects would fall under the ordinance, you will need to train the staff person responsible for reviewing the project proposals to be able to evaluate the accuracy of a project’s estimated cost and or/square footage, and the anticipated amount of C&D materials associated with a project of that size, whether its a demolition, new construction, or renovation project.