This page includes information about the Pharmaceutical and Sharps Waste Stewardship Program that is pertinent for jurisdictions such as county governments and other local agencies.

Home-Generated Sharps Waste

Local Agency Requests

A program operator must fully implement operation of its approved program no later than 270 days after CalRecycle approval of its stewardship plan. After that time, upon request, a program operator may choose to provide reimbursement for transportation and disposal costs of home-generated sharps waste or provide for the removal of the home-generated sharps waste from the household hazardous waste facility. A cost is eligible for reimbursement if a local agency incurs the cost 270 days or more after CalRecycle approves the stewardship plan of a program operator from which a local agency requests the reimbursement.

Visit the Home-Generated Sharps Stewardship Plans webpage for stewardship program full implementation dates, after which a program operator must begin accepting local agency requests.

Pharmaceutical Waste

There are no requirements for local governments to host collection receptacles or provide mail-back materials, but some voluntary efforts may already exist and can continue to operate.

Local Ordinance Repeal

This statewide program does not apply to a drug or sharp within a jurisdiction that has a local stewardship program ordinance that took effect before April 18, 2018. Such a jurisdiction has the option to repeal its ordinance. If repealed, the CalRecycle approved statewide program(s) would be required to operate within, and provide services to, that jurisdiction.

The following table provides a non-exhaustive list of California Jurisdictions with Local Stewardship Program Ordinances that took effect before April 18, 2018. The list may not include all local jurisdictions and may not reflect whether a local ordinance has been repealed.

Stewardship Program Ordinances

Alameda CountyYesYes
Contra Costa County (unincorporated)YesNo
Marin CountyYesNo
San Francisco City and CountyYesNo
San Luis Obispo CountyYesYes
San Mateo CountyYesNo
Santa Barbara CountyYesNo
Santa Clara CountyYesYes
Santa Cruz County (unincorporated)YesYes
City of CapitolaYesYes
City of Santa CruzYesYes
City of Scotts ValleyYesYes
City of WatsonvilleYesYes

This page provides a brief overview and is not intended to provide a comprehensive list of legal requirements. Please refer to statute and regulations for a complete list of requirements. Users are encouraged to seek the assistance of legal counsel to comply with applicable state law based on their pertinent facts and circumstances.

For more information contact: Pharmaceutical and Sharps Unit, PharmaSharps@calrecycle.ca.gov