BILL ANALYSIS                                                                                                                                                                                                    

                                                                    AB 1159

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          Date of Hearing:  April 28, 2015


                                  Luis Alejo, Chair

          AB 1159  
          (Gordon) - As Amended April 21, 2015

          SUBJECT:  Product stewardship:  pilot program:  household  
          batteries and home-generated sharps waste

          SUMMARY:  Establishes a limited-term product stewardship program  
          for home-generated medical sharps and household batteries.   
          Specifically, this bill:  

             1)   Defines "covered product" as a home-generated medical  
               sharp or household battery.

             2)   Defines "product stewardship organization" as one or  
               more producers of a covered product to act as an agent on  
               behalf of a producer to design, submit, and administer a  
               product stewardship plan, or a producer of a covered  

             3)   Requires each product stewardship organization to  
               develop and implement a product stewardship plan. 

             4)   Requires the California Department of Resources  
               Recycling and Recovery (CalRecycle), by January 1, 21017,  


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               to adopt regulations that, at a minimum, include: 

                  a.        Performance standards for a covered product,  
                    which shall include a minimum collection rate and  
                    appropriate geographic coverage for a covered product;

                  b.        Procedures for product stewardship plan  
                    submittal; and,

                  c.        The appointment of a stakeholder advisory  

             5)   States that any action by a product stewardship  
               organization or its members that relates to any of the  
               following is not a violation of the Cartwright Act  
               (Business & Professions Code (B&P)  16700, et seq.), the  
               Unfair Practices Act (B&P 1700, et seq.), or the Unfair  
               Competition Law (B&P  17200, et seq.)

             6)   States that any action by a product stewardship  
               organization or its members that relates to any of the  
               following is not exempt from the aforementioned laws:

                  a.        Fixing a price of or for a covered product,  
                    except related to the product stewardship plan;

                  b.        Fixing the output of production of a covered  
                    product; and,

                  c.        Restricting the geographic area in which, or  
                    customer to whom, a covered product will be sold. 


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             7)   Requires, on or before July 1, 2017, a product  
               stewardship plan organization to submit a product  
               stewardship plan to CalRecycle. 

             8)   Requires a product stewardship plan to contain the  

                  a.        Strategies to achieve the performance  
                    standards set by CalRecycle;

                  b.        Strategies for managing and reducing the  
                    life-cycle impacts of the covered product;

                  c.        A funding mechanism that provides sufficient  
                    funding to carry out the plan; and

                  d.        A process by which the financial activities of  
                    the product stewardship organization will be subject  
                    to an independent audit. 

             9)    Requires CalRecycle, within 30 days of receipt of a  
               submitted product stewardship plan, to review and determine  
               whether the product stewardship plan is complete or  
               incomplete, and requires CalRecycle to notify a product  
               stewardship organization of an incomplete plan's  
               deficiencies and require resubmittal. 

             10)  Requires CalRecycle, within 60 days, to determine  
               whether a product stewardship plan deemed complete complies  
               with its regulations, and requires CalRecycle to notify the  


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               product stewardship organization of its plans to approve or  
               deny the product stewardship plan. 

             11)   Requires CalRecycle to delineate reasons for not  
               approving a product stewardship plan, and allows the  
               submitter to revise and resubmit a product stewardship plan  
               within 60 days of receiving notice of disapproval. 

             12)  States that any product stewardship plan not approved by  
               January 1, 2018 is not in compliance. 

             13)  Requires a product stewardship organization submitting a  
               product stewardship plan to pay CalRecycle an annual  
               administrative fee, which shall be set at an appropriate  
               amount to cover CalRecycle's administrative costs. 

             14)  Creates the Product Stewardship Account and Product  
               Stewardship Penalty Subaccount.

             15)  Allows CalRecycle or a court to assess a civil penalty  
               on any person in violation of the provisions of this bill.

             16)  Requires CalRecycle, by March 1, 2017, to appoint a  
               stakeholder advisory committee for each covered product to  
               provide technical feedback, and requires the stakeholder  
               advisory committee to report to CalRecycle on product  
               stewardship organizations progress on implementation. 

             17)  Requires each product stewardship organization to  
               annually report to CalRecycle on the activities carried out  
               pursuant to the product stewardship plan. 


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             18)  Requires CalRecycle, by July 1, 2023, to report to the  
               Legislature with evaluations of the product stewardship  
               organizations, financial information and overall cost  

             19)  Sunsets the provisions of this bill on January 1, 2024. 


          EXISTING LAW:  

             1)   Pursuant to the Integrated Water Management Act of 1989,  
               requires each city and county in California to implement  
               plans to divert 25-percent of its waste stream by 1995 and  
               50-perent starting in 2000. (Public Resources Code (PRC)   
               41780, et seq.)
             2)   Requires each city to prepare, adopt, and submit to the  
               county in which the city is located a HHW element which  
               identifies a program for the safe collection, recycling,  
               treatment, and disposal of hazardous wastes, which are  
               generated by households in the city and which should be  
               separated from the solid waste stream. (PRC  41500)

             3)   Authorizes a city HHW element to include a program for  
               the safe collection, treatment, and disposal of sharps  
               waste generated by households. (PRC  41502) 

             4)   Requires each County to prepare a HHW element which  
               identifies a program for the safe collection, recycling,  
               treatment, and disposal of hazardous wastes, which are  
               generated by households in the city and which should be  
               separated from the solid waste stream. (PRC  41510)


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             5)   Authorizes a county HHW element to include a program for  
               the safe collection, treatment, and disposal of sharps  
               waste generated by households. (PRC  41502) 

             6)   Requires manufacturers of self-injectable medications to  
               annually submit a plan describing how it provides for the  
               safe collection and proper disposal of medical sharps. (PRC  

             7)   Prohibits the disposal of home-generated sharps waste in  
               the trash or recycling containers, and requires that all  
               sharps waste be transported to a collection center in a  
               sharps container approved by the local enforcement agency.  
               (Health and Safety Code (H&S)   118286)

          FISCAL EFFECT:  Unknown.


          Need for the bill: According to the author, "AB 1159 would  
          establish the Product Stewardship Pilot Program, which would  
          require producers and product stewardship organizations of  
          covered products- either home generated sharps waste or  
          household batteries, to develop and implement a product  
          stewardship plan?  

          "Both of these products are widely used, lack convenient  
          disposal and recycling opportunities for consumers, and have  


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          significant and indisputable end-of-life impacts?  

          "The regulations would be performance-based instead of "command  
          and control", meaning that the product manufacturers would be  
          given certain performance goals for the program but would be  
          left to develop the compliance mechanisms in the most  
          cost-effective and efficient manner possible and meet goals set  
          by the state." 

          Extended producer responsibility: CalRecycle defines extended  
          producer responsibility (EPR) as a strategy to place a shared  
          responsibility for end-of-life product management on the  
          producers, and all entities involved in the product chain,  
          instead of the general public; while encouraging product design  
          changes that minimize a negative impact on human health and the  
          environment at every stage of the product's lifecycle.  This  
          allows the costs of treatment and disposal to be incorporated  
          into the total cost of a product.  It places primary  
          responsibility on the producer, or brand owner, who makes design  
          and marketing decisions. It also creates a setting for markets  
          to emerge that truly reflect the environmental impacts of a  
          product, and to which producers and consumers respond. 

          By shifting costs and responsibilities of product disposal to  
          producers and others who directly benefit, EPR provides an  
          incentive to eliminate waste and pollution through product  
          design changes. 

          There are a number of existing, statewide EPR programs for  


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          various products, including, but not limited to:

             Paint stewardship  : The California Paint Stewardship Law  
            (Chapter 420, Statutes of 2010) follows producer  
            responsibility principles to ensure that leftover paint is  
            properly managed in a manner that is sustainably funded. Under  
            the program, manufacturers are required to establish and  
            finance a safe and reliable system for the recovery and proper  
            management of leftover paint from residents and businesses.  
            Historically, paint has represented almost one-third of the  
            material collected through local HHW programs and costs local  
            government millions of dollars to manage.

             Used Oil  : The California Used Oil Recycling Enhancement Act  
            (Chapter 817, Statutes of 1991) requires oil manufacturers to  
            pay to CalRecycle an established fee per gallon of lubricating  
            oil sold in California. CalRecycle can use those fees to  
            provide grants to industrial generators, curbside collection  
            programs, and certified collection centers as incentive  
            payments to discourage the illegal disposal of used oil and  
            increase used oil recycling. 

             Mattresses  : The California Used Mattress Recovery and  
            Recycling Act (Chapter 388, Statutes of 2013) aims to reduce  
            illegal dumping, increase recycling, and substantially reduce  
            public agency costs for the end-of-use management of used  
            mattresses by requiring mattress retailers to offer consumer  
            the option to have a used mattress picked up at the time of  
            delivery of a new mattress. 

          Medical sharps: An estimated one million Californians inject  
          medications outside traditional health care facilities, which  
          generate approximately 389 million sharps each year.

          Improper sharps disposal can affect janitors, maids, pest  
          control workers, groundskeepers, waste management workers, and  
          children or household pets among others. Roughly 25% to 45% of  


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          all facilities processing household trash (besides recycling) in  
          California have workers hand-sorting recyclable material out of  
          that trash. A single worker's on-the-job needle stick can mean  
          weeks of taking drugs to prevent the spread of infection, with  
          side effects including nausea, depression, and extreme fatigue  
          as well as months waiting for expensive periodic tests to reveal  
          whether they contracted life-threatening HIV/AIDs or hepatitis B  
          or C. 

          Under current law, a pharmaceutical manufacturer that sells or  
          distributes a medication in California that is intended to be  
          self-injected at home through the use of a hypodermic needle,  
          pen needle, intravenous needle, or any other similar device, is  
          required to submit a plan to CalRecycle that describes the  
          actions taken by the manufacturer to support or provide for the  
          safe collection and proper disposal of the waste devices, and  
          educate consumers about safe sharps management and collection  
          opportunities. To date, CalRecycle has received sharps  
          collection and disposal plans from 24 pharmaceutical  
          manufacturers or distributors. 

          Batteries: Up until February 8, 2006, California residents were  
          allowed to throw away used battery in the trash. However, since  
          then, all batteries are considered hazardous waste and have been  
          prohibited from every solid waste stream in the state due to  
          those toxic materials. All batteries must be recycled, or taken  
          to a household hazardous waste disposal facility, a universal  
          waste handler or an authorized recycling facility.

          Currently, local household hazardous waste collection programs  
          are the primary outlet for proper management of universal waste  
          and other hazardous wastes generated by households, including  
          batteries.  Cost estimates to manage waste batteries average  
          around $800 per ton (with some costing up to $2,700 per ton),  
          amounting to tens of millions of dollars each year.


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          According to a University of California case study, "Single-Use  
          Alkaline Battery Case Study," which assessed the extent to which  
          product life-cycle greenhouse gas emissions might be reduced  
          through possible product design, manufacturing, and end-of-life  
          management strategies introduced under a producer's EPR  
          initiatives, found that "batteries represent a reasonable  
          opportunity for EPR programs due to the ready availability of  
          environmental improvements through design, manufacture, and  
          end-of-life strategies, which may offer California additional  
          greenhouse gas emissions reductions beyond those expected under  
          its current batteries recycling scheme."

          In 2004, the Legislature enacted the Rechargeable Battery  
          Recycling Act, which went into effect July 1, 2006, requiring  
          all retailers that sell or have sold rechargeable batteries to  
          take back spent batteries for recycling at no charge to the  
          consumer. Rechargeable batteries only constitute about 5% of all  
          disposed batteries, leaving room for much-needed policies for  
          end-of-life battery management. 

          Arguments in support: The League of California Cities argues  
          that, "Managing the waste stream is a very expensive and often  
          burdensome task for local governments. Cities and Counties spend  
          upwards of $500 million annually to manage products prohibited  
          from landfills as well as those lawfully disposed of at the  
          landfill - a cost that local governments ultimately pass along  
          to the consumer in the form of fees on solid waste services. AB  
          1159 takes an important first step in better managing  
          home-generated sharps and household batteries by requiring  
          product producers and product stewardship organizations to  help  
          address end-of-life issues for their products, thereby keeping  
          them out of the local landfill and ultimately lowering the  
          amount of waste that must be disposed in California."

          Arguments in opposition: Sanofi, a healthcare and life science  


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          company, argues that, "? any discussion of recycling or  
          collection of waste should start by taking into consideration  
          and allowing for programs and facilities that already exist to  
          dispose of used batteries and sharps waste as well as  
          infrastructure that can be potentially utilized efficiently." 

          Related legislation: AB 45 (Mullin).  Requires local governments  
          to increase diversion of various household hazardous wastes,  
          including household batteries and home-generated medical sharps,  
          and meet designated diversion goals for those wastes. This bill  
          is set to be heard in the E.S&T.M. Committee on April 28, 2015. 

          Double referral:  This bill was double referred to the Assembly  
          Natural Resources Committee where is passed on April 13, 2015,  
          on a 9-0 vote. 



          7th Generation Advisors

          Alameda County

          Alameda County Medication Education Disposal Safety

          CA Refuse Recycling Council (CRRC)


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          California Product Stewardship Council

          California Refuse Recycling Council

          California State Association of Counties (CSAC)

          Californians Against Waste (CAW)

          Castro Valley Sanitation District

          Central Contra Costa Solis Waste Authority (Recycle Smart)

          City of Santa Monica

          City of Sunnyvale

          City of Thousand Oaks

          City of Torrance

          Clean Water Action

          Contra Costa Clean Water Program (CCCWP)

          Delta Diablo


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          League of California Cities

          Los Angeles County Solid Waste Management Committee/Integrated  
          Waste Management Task Force 

          Marin County Hazardous & Solid Waste Management Authority

          Marin County Solid Waste Management JPA

          Marin Sanitary Service

          Metropolitan Recycling (Bakersfield)

          Napa County

          Napa Recycling and Waste Services

          Riverside County Waste Management Department
          Natural Resources Defense Council

          Republic Services

          Riverside County Waste Management Dept.

          Rural County Representatives of California (RCRC)

          Sacramento County 


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          Santa Clara County

          Solid Waste Association of North America (SWANA)

          Tehama County Sanitary Landfill Agency


          West Marin Environmental Action Committee 

          Western Placer Waste Management Authority



          Association of Home Appliance Manufacturers


          Biotechnology Industry Organization

          California Healthcare Institute 


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          California Manufacturers and Technology Association

          California Cable & Telecommunications Association (CCTA)





          Analysis Prepared by:Paige Brokaw / E.S. & T.M. / (916) 319-3965