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Resource Recovery & Recycling Division
2500 Michigan Ave.
Santa Monica, CA  90404


Phone: 310-458-2223
Fax: 310-264-7750

Office Hours:
To prevent the spread of COVID-19, our offices will be CLOSED to the public until further notice.

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Construction and Demolition Waste FAQs

Q. My construction (addition, alteration, demolition, etc.) project will have very small amounts of waste generated. Do I still have to complete a Waste Management Plan?
Yes. If it is determined that the valuation of your project is at least $50,000 or if the total square feet of your project is equal to or greater than 1,000 sq. ft., then you must complete a Waste Management Plan. In addition, ALL demolition projects require a Waste Management Plan.

Q. If I want to make changes to the original Waste Management Plan, when should I inform the Resource Recovery & Recycling Division of these changes?
Any changes that are made to the original Waste Management Plan must be reported to the Resource Recovery and Recycling Division before changes are implemented, or you will forfeit your deposit.

Q. When do I file for refund of my performance deposit?
You must file for refund of your performance deposit within 30 days of Final Inspection sign-off  or issuance of certificate of occupancy by a City of Santa Monica building inspector. If you wait until after 30 days, you may forfeit your performance deposit.

Q. Do you require all tonnage receipts from the project to have the project address on them?
Yes, all weight tickets must have the project address to be accepted for Final Compliance.

Q. How do I file for refund of my performance deposit?
To file for a refund you must submit:
  1. All documentation to show where you recycled/disposed of the construction and/or demolition (C&D) debris (e.g. disposal receipts showing weights, material type and project address, any dispatch tickets showing private hauler used to haul debris and project address, any photos of salvaged or reused items at the project site).
  2. A copy of the building and/or demolition permits sign-off by a City of Santa Monica employee.
  3. A completed Final Compliance Form  must be submitted.
Q. How do I ensure that I reach the minimum requirement of recycling 70% of all the debris that is hauled from my project?
You should bring all of your C&D debris to one of the Mixed C&D Recycling Facilities to ensure that you meet the minimum recycling requirements. See Approved Facilities List.

Q. If I plan to salvage materials from my project prior to or during construction and/or demolition activities do I need to document this material and how would I do this?
. Yes, you will need to document these salvaged items by taking photos and submitting them with all other necessary paperwork for return of deposit.

Q. What constitutes inerts and do they have to be delivered to an inert landfill?
Inerts are source-separated or mixed loads of dirt, concrete or asphalt and must be taken to an approved inert landfill. Reference the Approved Facilities List  for details.

Q. Should any of the material that is coming out of my project be taken to a landfill?
We do not suggest any material from a project being conducted in the City of Santa Monica be taken to a landfill because it will reduce the 70 % recycle rate required by the city and reduce the amount of performance deposit returned to the applicant.

Q. What constitutes self-hauling by a contractor in the City of Santa Monica?
Self-hauling is when the contractor uses his/her own trucks to haul C&D debris from a construction and/or demolition project in the City of Santa Monica. A self-hauler CAN NOT own refuse bins. If they do, then they do not quality as a Self-Hauler and must apply for an Enterprise Permit at the Resource Recovery & Recycling Division located at 2500 Michigan Avenue.

Q. What are examples of Educational Strategies (Section II, Question #7) in regards to reaching my diversion goals and ensuring participation by all workers of the Waste Reduction and Recycling Plan activities?
Regular tailgate meetings are suggested to inform employees about our diversion requirements. Along with this method you could also post the Recycling Plan activities at the jobsite.

Q. How do you determine the amount of mixed C&D material (in tons) that you must estimate in Section II – Page 4?
If your project concerns an alteration or new construction you can take your projected square footage and multiply it by 5 and divide it by 2000 to come up with an estimated “Total Quantities” in tons column. If your project concerns a demolition within the City of Santa Monica you can take your projected square footage and multiply it by 50 and divide it by 2000 to come up with your estimated “Total quantities” in tons.

Q. How do you determine your estimated recycling rate in Section II – Page 4?
Use the recycling rate listed for the C&D facility that you have chosen. This can be found on the Approved Facilities list online at the city’s website. If you have NOT chosen a city approved C&D facility, then you run the risk of forfeiting some or all of your deposit by not meeting the recycling requirements.

Q. What is the normal estimated time allowed for the applicant to receive his/her deposit after they have submitted final compliance?
Normally, 4 to 6 weeks from the date of receipt of all the required documents and the recording of final date of project in the city's automated program (permit plus system). 

Q. To whom is the deposit made out to/returned to?
According to city policy, the deposit must be made payable to the original applicant stated on the C&D Debris Receipt. In order to process the refund to another person and/or company, we need a letter from the original applicant releasing the funds to the new payee. 
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