Ask Orlando: Why doesn’t the city provide glass recycling for bars and restaurants?

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Why doesn’t the City of Orlando provide glass (beer & wine bottle) recycling for bars & restaurants? It’s embarrassing.

One of our readers reached out with this question and the answer was pretty simple and straight-forward according to city officials.

The city does provide glass recycling bins to commercial vendors — upon request.

A lot of local businesses do recycle glass, but there are over a dozen private recycling companies within the city lines and some chose these vendors over the city. Some, of course, do not recycle at all.

It’s responsible to recycle, but it’s not a legal requirement. Speaking of legal, local governments are legally prevented from positioning themselves as the sole and exclusive providers of recycling bins for commercial businesses.

Florida Statute 403.7046 reads, a local government may not require a commercial establishment that generates source-separated recovered materials to sell or otherwise convey its recovered materials to the local government or to a facility designated by the local government, nor may the local government restrict such a generator’s right to sell or otherwise convey such recovered materials to any properly certified recovered materials dealer who has satisfied the requirements of this section. A local government may not enact any ordinance that prevents such a dealer from entering into a contract with a commercial establishment to purchase, collect, transport, process, or receive source-separated recovered materials.

There are several commercial businesses that do utilize the City of Orlando’s recycling services such as the Sun Trust tower and 55 West. The city also provides services to several apartment complexes.

People in the city pay for these recycling services through their utilities provider.

Private individuals or corporate entities interested in recycling services can contact their local government’s solid waste management companies to inquire about services.

Editor’s note: This story is part of Ask Orlando, a new feature in which we ask readers to ask questions, we hunt down the answers and report back. If you have a question you’d like us to report on, you can fill out the form below, or head to OrlandoSentinel.com/AskOrlando.

Shannon Green is a member of our community conversations team. You can contact her at sgreen@orlandosentinel.com or follow her on twitter at @iamshannongreen.



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