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Tuesday, July 14, 2015

What's Next? A 'Regional Approach' on Composting Fees?

Composting Services For Businesses Are Free in Emeryville 
Must Fees Now be Imposed
to Meet Oakland?

The San Francisco Chronicle reports Oakland has almost doubled their fees on restaurants for composting in a piece printed today, recalling a recent meme forwarded by pro-business forces in Emeryville that business fees mandated by local cities should be done only as a part of a 'regional approach'  rather than in a unilateral move like this.  The notion that a city might act unilaterally imposing business fees is a bete noir for the right wing opinion blog the E'Ville Eye and much ink has been dedicated to foreclosing on Emeryville raising its minimum wage in that blog, owing to the need for the regional approach, an idea the blog presents as an inherent good.

Now Oakland takes unilateral action with the compost fee increase, drawing Emeryville's Farley's Cafe owner Chris Hillyard into the fray.  Mr Hillyard, who owns cafes in Oakland, San Francisco and in Emeryville told Chronicle columnist Chip Johnson,  "What’s so stunning about Oakland’s deal with Waste Management is that few, if any, cities pay anything close to the rates Oakland commercial customers are paying".  Mr Johnson goes on, "Hillyard confirmed that he pays $77 a month in San Francisco and receives free services in Emeryville, but the monthly bill for compost services at his Oakland store is around $500.  “In Emeryville and San Francisco, both cities provide a diversion discount,” Hillyard said. “Instead of throwing stuff in the landfill, you’re given a credit on your bill for recycling and composting in both cities.”

Emeryville it would seem is the place for small business...especially restaurants.

Are customers going to abandon Oakland restaurants now and run for Emeryville because of the low composting fees?  That's what the E'ville Eye would have us believe if they're planning on presenting a consistent argument.  Oakland taxpayers presumably are tired of absorbing these costs that arguably should be borne by the private businesses and so they're now going to see these businesses flee to Emeryville or go bankrupt if the E'Ville Eye is correct.

The shoe is on the other foot with Oakland acting on its own and Emeryville standing by on the sidelines...the opposite of what happened during Emeryville's minimum wage debate.  Is the E'Ville Eye now going to start railing for a regional approach for composting fees as they did for the minimum wage increase?  Are they going to demand Emeryville slavishly raise their fees to match Oakland to accommodate this meme of theirs?  Or will the pro-business E'Ville Eye now see the silly procrustean nature of their previous hamstringing argument?

The San Francisco Chronicle article may be read HERE.

1 comment:

  1. The E'Ville Eye? Common Tattler...that's too facile. You need a more worthy opponent.