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115A.551 RECYCLING.
    Subdivision 1. Definition. (a) For the purposes of this section, "recycling" means, in addition
to the meaning given in section 115A.03, subdivision 25b, yard waste composting, and recycling
that occurs through mechanical or hand separation of materials that are then delivered for reuse
in their original form or for use in manufacturing processes that do not cause the destruction of
recyclable materials in a manner that precludes further use.
(b) For the purposes of this section, "total solid waste generation" means the total by
weight of:
(1) materials separated for recycling;
(2) materials separated for yard waste composting;
(3) mixed municipal solid waste plus yard waste, motor and vehicle fluids and filters, tires,
lead acid batteries, and major appliances; and
(4) residential waste materials that would be mixed municipal solid waste but for the fact
that they are not collected as such.
    Subd. 2. County recycling goals. By December 31, 1993, each county outside of the
metropolitan area will have as a goal to recycle a minimum of 25 percent by weight of total solid
waste generation; and by December 31, 1993, each county within the metropolitan area will have
as a goal to recycle a minimum of 35 percent by weight of total solid waste generation. Each
county will develop and implement or require political subdivisions within the county to develop
and implement programs, practices, or methods designed to meet its recycling goal. Nothing in
this section or in any other law may be construed to prohibit a county from establishing a higher
recycling goal.
    Subd. 2a. Supplementary recycling goals. (a) By December 31, 1996, each county will
have as a goal to recycle the following amounts:
(1) for a county outside of the metropolitan area, 35 percent by weight of total solid waste
generation;
(2) for a metropolitan county, 50 percent by weight of total solid waste generation.
Each county will develop and implement or require political subdivisions within the county
to develop and implement programs, practices, or methods designed to meet its recycling
goal. Nothing in this section or in any other law may be construed to prohibit a county from
establishing a higher recycling goal.
(b) For a county that, by January 1, 1995, is implementing a solid waste reduction program
that is approved by the commissioner, the commissioner shall apply up to three percentage points
toward achievement of the recycling goals in this subdivision. In addition, the commissioner shall
apply demonstrated waste reduction that exceeds three percent reduction toward achievement of
the goals in this subdivision.
(c) No more than five percentage points may be applied toward achievement of the recycling
goals in this subdivision for management of yard waste. The five percentage points must be
applied as provided in this paragraph. The commissioner shall apply three percentage points for a
county in which residents, by January 1, 1996, are provided with:
(1) an ongoing comprehensive education program under which they are informed about how
to manage yard waste and are notified of the prohibition in section 115A.931; and
(2) the opportunity to drop off yard waste at specified sites or participate in curbside yard
waste collection.
The commissioner shall apply up to an additional two percentage points toward achievement of
the recycling goals in this subdivision for additional activities approved by the commissioner that
are likely to reduce the amount of yard waste generated and to increase the on-site composting
of yard waste.
    Subd. 3. Interim goals; nonmetropolitan counties. The commissioner shall establish
interim recycling goals for the nonmetropolitan counties to assist them in meeting the goals
established in subdivision 2.
    Subd. 4. Interim monitoring. The commissioner shall monitor the progress of each county
toward meeting the recycling goals in subdivisions 2 and 2a. The commissioner shall report to
the senate and house committees having jurisdiction over environment and natural resources and
environment and natural resources finance on the progress of the counties by July 1 of each
odd-numbered year. If the commissioner finds that a county is not progressing toward the goals in
subdivisions 2 and 2a, the commissioner shall negotiate with the county to develop and implement
solid waste management techniques designed to assist the county in meeting the goals, such as
organized collection, curbside collection of source-separated materials, and volume-based pricing.
The progress report shall be included in the report required under section 115A.411.
    Subd. 5. Failure to meet goal. (a) A county failing to meet the interim goals in subdivision 3
shall, as a minimum:
(1) notify county residents of the failure to achieve the goal and why the goal was not
achieved; and
(2) provide county residents with information on recycling programs offered by the county.
(b) If, based on the recycling monitoring described in subdivision 4, the commissioner
finds that a county will be unable to meet the recycling goals established in subdivisions 2 and
2a, the commissioner shall, after consideration of the reasons for the county's inability to meet
the goals, recommend legislation for consideration by the senate and house committees having
jurisdiction over environment and natural resources and environment and natural resources
finance to establish mandatory recycling standards and to authorize the commissioner to mandate
appropriate solid waste management techniques designed to meet the standards in those counties
that are unable to meet the goals.
    Subd. 6. County solid waste plans. Each county shall include in its solid waste management
plan described in section 115A.46, or its solid waste master plan described in section 473.803, a
recycling implementation strategy for meeting the recycling goal established in subdivision 2a
along with mechanisms for providing financial incentives to solid waste generators to reduce the
amount of waste generated and to separate recyclable materials from the waste stream.
    Subd. 7. Recycling implementation strategy. Each county shall submit to the commissioner
for approval the recycling implementation strategy required in subdivision 6. The recycling
implementation strategy must be submitted by October 31, 1995, and must:
(1) be consistent with the approved county solid waste management plan;
(2) identify the materials that are being and will be recycled in the county to meet the goals
under this section and the parties responsible and methods for recycling the material;
(3) provide a budget to ensure adequate funding for needed county and local programs and
demonstrate an ongoing commitment to spending the money on recycling programs; and
(4) include a schedule for implementing recycling activities needed to meet the goals in
subdivision 2a.
History: 1Sp1989 c 1 art 18 s 12; 1991 c 337 s 19-21; 1992 c 593 art 1 s 14-16,54; 1993 c
249 s 13,14,61; 1994 c 639 art 5 s 3; 1995 c 247 art 1 s 14-17; art 2 s 15; 1996 c 470 s 27; 1999
c 73 s 4; 1Sp2005 c 1 art 2 s 161