A pending Miami Beach ordinance may require community associations to pay fines for their “neighbor’s inability to put a plastic water bottle in the correct trash bin,” according to the Sun Sentinel. The ordinance would also fine those who put trash in their recycling bins.
“The waste haulers operating in the city have reported that approximately 1,558 multifamily and commercial establishments within the city of Miami Beach are currently not participating in the county-required recycling program,” stated the commission item summary.
“The proposed ordinance seeks to establish a comprehensive and aggressive Citywide Recyling Program for multifamily residences and commercial establishments. This proposed program would require that multifamily and commercial establishments not only have a recycling program in place like the county currently requires, but would also mandate that recyclables be recycled,” continued the summary.
The program’s primary goal is simply to: “enhance the environmental sustainability of the community,” but the enforcement comes with heavy consequences.
The first violation carries a warning, or a fine of up to $350–a large slap on the wrist considering the offense, the second violation equals a fine of up to $500, and the third violation brings about a heavy fine of up to $1,000. Fines could reach sums of up to $5,000 for the fourth and subsequent environmental offenses.
City trash inspectors and waste and recycling contractors would be required to alert the city to any offenses, and the consequences may even escalate to include refusal to collect the association’s trash if the association is found to be out of compliance twice.
Citizens are invited to share their thoughts on the pending ordinance by emailing the Miami Beach City Council.