The Professional Recyclers of Pennsylvania has begun work on an initiative to reauthorize the $2/ton Act 101 recycling fee due expire in 2020.
Work on reauthorizing the recycling fee must begin now because the 2020 sunset date has this impact on recycling grant programs:
-- 901 County Planning Grants: 2017 will likely be the last year that funds will be available;
-- 902 Recycling Program Setup Grants: 2016 grant round may be the last grant round (awarded in 2017);
-- 903 County Coordinator Grants: 2019 will likely be the last year to apply for grant funding; and
-- 904 Recycling Performance Grants: 2018 will be the last year to apply for grant funding.
Should the funding sunset, grant programs will be discontinued, yet the mandates to have local recycling programs and county waste plans will continue.
Act 101 of 1988, known as the Municipal Waste Planning, Recycling and Waste Reduction Act, established Pennsylvania's municipal waste recycling program.
Since its enactment, more than 11.6 million residents-- at least 94 percent of the state's population-- have access to recycling. Over 1,700 Pennsylvania communities recycle, over three times the number required to recycle by Act 101.
About 79 percent have convenient access to recycling through about 1,050 curbside pickup programs. Since Pennsylvania is largely rural, 870 drop-off programs extend recycling to the greatest number of communities.
In 2014 alone, Pennsylvania recycled over 16.84 million tons of waste that resulted in more than 15.88 million tons of carbon dioxide emissions removed from the air, the amount of electricity saved in 2.18 million American homes per year, or 3.34 million in passenger vehicles taken off the road for one year.
Act 101 supplies partial funding for County Solid Waste Plans; curbside and other recycling programs, projects, equipment, and education; County Recycling Coordinators; and incentives to municipalities based on the tons of material recycled.
Over $36 million is provided each year for the benefit of waste reduction and recycling.
Pennsylvania counties have received over $1 million each year to provide funding for County Recycling Coordinators and over $2 million each year to fund planning.
Municipalities and counties have received over $19 million towards recycling programs and education and over $16 million in recycling performance grants each year.
Funding for these grant programs is included in Chapter 7 of Act 101 and is provided via a $2/ton recycling fee for each ton of waste disposed within the Commonwealth.
In addition, funding for DGS, DCED, and PennDOT, the Recycling Hotline, PA Recycling Markets Center, and the Technical Assistance program will lose their funding, as well.
To support the initiative to reauthorize the recycling fee, the PA Recycling Markets Center is developing a statewide calculation for the economic benefits of recycling.For more information, visit PROP’s Recycling Fee Reauthorization webpage or contact Jennifer Summers at 717-441-6049 or send email to: firstname.lastname@example.org.