There are a number of proposals introduced in 2015 that deal with recycling and composting. Many of these proposals are a result of the recent Task Force on the Advancement of Materials Recycling. Read the report by this task force, of which IEC was a member, here. Additionally, a report regarding the challenges and solutions to increase food scrap composting was recently commissioned by DCEO and is available here.
The General Assembly has also been taking steps to reduce its paper usage. For example, it may be a small step, but the Illinois House just changed its rules this year to require 2 copies of a bill to be filed instead of 5. With thousands of bills filed, this amounts to far less paper used. A bill is also advancing to allow agency reports that are required to be filed with the General Assembly to be received electronically.
There are also a large number of bills regarding waste issues for 2015:
- Electronic waste recycling – HB1455 would address the rising costs to municipalities and counties who are serving as collectors for Illinois’ electronic waste recycling law. This law has diverted millions of pounds of electronics from landfills. Rep. Emily McAsey is the sponsor.
- Increase procurement of recycled materials – HB1429 would require agencies to purchase the recycled supplies option if two bids come in at the same cost. Rep. Carol Sente is the sponsor.
- Increase compost used in land maintenance activities – HB1362 would require each agency to report on how it could increase the amount of compost used in land maintenance activities. Rep. Emily McAsey is the sponsor.
- Temporary and permanent drop offs for food scrap and landscape waste – HB437/SB790 would create new options for temporary and permanent drop offs of food scraps and landscape waste, creating more infrastructure for Illinoisans to have access to composting services. Rep. Barb Wheeler and Sen. Melinda Bush are the sponsors.
- Pilot program expansion for food scrap infrastructure –HB2759/SB1518 would expand a pilot program that allows food scrap to be temporarily stored at landscape waste transfer stations.
- Support of better product labeling laws – HB2495would amend Illinois’ support of national product labeling laws to include better labeling of compostable products. Rep. Sam Yingling is the sponsor.
- SB793 – Proper Disposal of Needles or Syringes. SB 793 addresses a growing problem of household generated sharps (needles or syringes) being placed for collection as recyclable materials by prohibiting sharps from being placed in curbside recycling collection. Sharps are often placed in plastic bottles and can injure sanitation workers.