March 15, 2010
Schwarzenegger signs bottle bill fix
California Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger signed Assembly Bill 7, "The Bottle Bill Fix," which will retroactively disburse payments that had been suspended by funding shortfalls, resulting in the shuttering of hundreds of return centers across the Golden State.
The law temporarily stabilizes the state's Beverage Container Recycling Fund (BCRF) — subsidized by the California Redemption Value (CRV) program — by restoring $15 million in monthly recycling funding, which was slashed last year and resulted in the closure of hundreds of return centers and the loss of several hundred jobs. BCRF funding is used by municipal curbside recycling programs and neighborhood drop-off programs, for supermarket-based recycling payments, recycling market development and conservation corps recycling efforts, as well as other performance-based incentives for recycling.
AB 7 prohibits the state from expending, for the 2010 and 2011 calendar years, funds annually authorized for grants for beverage container recycling and litter reduction programs, for statewide public education and information campaigns, for recycling market development, and other programs. Additionally, it authorizes the state board to make loans, at negative interest rates, for projects in accordance with the federal Clean Water Act.
In his signing statement, the Schwarzenegger calls on the legislature to fix "technical flaws in this bill that need to be addressed … to ensure that program participants do not see another loss in funding."