State of California Mandated Trash Clean-Up Order (CMTC)
In 2015, the State of California, through its State Water Resources Control Board, issued Resolution No. 2015-0019 referred to as the Trash Amendments. The Trash Amendments directed the individual Regional Water Quality Control Boards (RWQCBs) to implement a statewide mandate requiring the control, collection, and disposal of solid waste larger than 5 millimeters in size (excluding green and hazardous wastes) from the right-of-way prior to entering surface waters. In response to the Trash Amendments, in 2017, the San Diego RWQCB issued Order No. R9-2017-0077 (Order), requiring agencies that own and operate a municipal stormwater system in the region to submit an implementation plan, adhering to specific framework described within the Order, to demonstrate compliance.
The City must demonstrate full compliance with the Trash Amendments no later than December 2, 2030 and must demonstrate annually that the City is working toward compliance through its annual report to San Diego RWQCB. Failure to comply is subject to enforcement through violation, and can include issuance of a compliance order, civil action, or criminal penalties. Total fines can be significant and exceed the total cost to implement the program.
The City developed an Implementation Plan to comply with the requirements. As required by the Trash Amendments, the City’s implementation plan includes the installation of filters (trash capture devices) in storm drains to prevent trash in the right-of-way from entering surface waters. Where the installation of filters is not feasible, the plan identifies non-structural programmatic efforts aimed at reducing trash.
Funding was achieved through collecting a separate charge as the CMTC charge on EDCO bills for all trash generators including residential, commercial, industrial, and institutional. The fee schedule is based on solid waste receptacle container volumes, equitable to call generators, and frequency of pick-ups. Revenues will provide for operation, maintenance, construction or reconstruction, replacement costs, and debt service expenses for the control, collection, and disposal of solid waste, (excluding green and hazardous wastes) not properly placed in a solid waste receptacle, prior to entering surface waters.