INDIANAPOLIS – On Tuesday, the Senate passed House Bill (HB) 1183, a measure sponsored by Senator Mark Stoops (D-Bloomington) that would set a statewide goal for recycling municipal waste and require Indiana recycling organizations to post periodic reports on their recycling efforts.

The act would set in place a goal for Indiana to recycle at least 50 percent of its municipal waste by 2019. HB 1183 defines municipal waste as any garbage, refuse, industrial restroom waste, office waste or another similar material. Sen. Stoops said this goal is ambitious, but attainable.

“When we dump our municipal waste into landfills we are literally throwing away valuable commodities that could be used for other purposes,” Sen. Stoops said. “By working with recyclers in the state to analyze the situation, we can focus state policy and resources to create a more effective recycling program.”

The measure would also require all Indiana recycling organizations and businesses to submit an annual recycling activity report to the Indiana Department of Environmental Management beginning in 2015. Those reports would be shared with the public through the department’s website. The Department of Environmental Management would also be required to submit to the Environmental Quality Service Council an annual report summarizing the information contained in the recycling reports.

Sen. Stoops said working with recycling facilities to increase accountability and gain a better understanding of the status of their efforts could help Indiana become more efficient.

“Improving our recycling efforts in Indiana will create jobs, combat environmental degradation and help us capitalize on resources that are available in our own backyard,” Sen. Stoops said.

The measure was approved by a vote of 47-1 and will be sent to the original author of the bill in the House of Representatives to consider changes made in the Senate.

Sen. Stoops represents Indiana Senate District 40, which includes portions of Monroe County, including the City of Bloomington. For more information on Sen. Stoops, his legislative agenda or other State Senate business call 1-800-382-9467 or visit www.IN.gov/S40.

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