The protection of the public health and safety and the environment is CalRecycle's top priority. Generally, the best way to ensure an effective enforcement program is by pursuing compliance first through all available means before taking a formal enforcement action. Appropriate and timely responses to instances of noncompliance with state minimum standards (SMS), solid waste facility permit terms and conditions, and enforcement actions are necessary to ensure protection of public health and safety and the environment.

CalRecycle relies on certified local enforcement agencies (LEAs) to regulate the handling of compostable materials in their jurisdictions. CalRecycle is the enforcement agency (EA) in jurisdictions where there is no LEA. The inspection form is a first step in assessing the operations at a site and implementing enforcement actions as necessary.

There are five tiers of regulation for solid waste handling activities:

  1. Excluded Solid Waste Handling
  2. Enforcement Agency Notification
  3. Registration Permit
  4. Standardized Permit
  5. Full Permit

The first two tiers are for “operations” and are of lesser regulatory concern and do not require a solid waste facility permit the latter three are facilities and require a permit based on the tier. The tier in which an activity is slotted depends not only on the type of activity, but also the type and amount of solid waste being handled.

The LEA/EA has the ability to write and enforce notice and orders to require compliance with state minimum standards and permitting requirements at solid waste operations and facilities. The Notice and Order Toolkit provides internet access to information and resources for writing a notice and order.