WHEREAS, the State of Delaware disposes of approximately 800,000 tons of municipal solid waste each year, and
WHEREAS, the State of Delaware’s participation in and promotion of recycling programs will significantly reduce the amount of solid waste disposed of by removing recyclable materials from the waste stream and making them available for reuse by industry; and
WHEREAS, for recycling programs to market the growing quantities of recyclable materials, industrial demand to use recycled materials in manufacturing processes must increase and consumer demand to purchase industry’s finished products made from recycled materials must increase, and
WHEREAS, the State, as a consumer, purchases approximately $170,000,000 worth of goods each year, and the State desires to purchase finished products made from recycled materials, designed for recyclability, or emphasizing waste reduction, wherever feasible; and
WHEREAS, Section 6002 of the Resource Conservation and Recovery Act (RCRA), as amended (42 U.S.C. §6962) requires that states using federal funds for procurement buy recycled products in certain circumstances and the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has prepared Comprehensive Procurement Guidelines on specific materials for use by states in meeting the requirements of the law.
BE IT ENACTED BY THE GENERAL ASSEMBLY OF THE STATE OF DELAWARE
Section 1. Amend Title 29, Chapter 69, by adding a new subsection 6938 to read as follows:
“6938. Purchase of Recycled, Reusable and Recyclable Products
a. The State shall have as a goal the maximum feasible purchase of recycled content products and reusable or recyclable products, and the maximum feasible percentage of post-consumer recycled content in its purchases. For any item that is being purchased by the State and for which the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency has developed a Comprehensive Procurement Guideline as required by Section 6002 of the Resource Conservation and Recovery Act (RCRA), as amended (42 U.S.C. §6962), it shall be a goal of the State to purchase that item with a recycled content that meets or exceeds the EPA guideline standards.
b. Prior to initiating a request for procurement of any product, an agency shall review its existing specifications for such product to determine whether recycled content products or reusable or recyclable products are directly or indirectly excluded. The agency must eliminate any such exclusion from its specifications, unless it can demonstrate in writing to the satisfaction of the agency head that the exclusion is either:
(1) operationally necessary;
(2) legally mandated; or
(3) necessary to avoid excessive cost. Excessive cost shall be defined as when the recycled product cost is greater than 5% of the equivalent virgin product cost.
c. When requesting any purchase of a product for which the U.S. EPA has established a Comprehensive Procurement Guideline, an agency is required to buy the specified product unless the agency can demonstrate in writing to the satisfaction of the agency head that a product meeting the standards either:
(1) is not available competitively;
(2) is not available within a reasonable time frame;
(3) does not meet appropriate performance standards; or
(4) is available only at an excessive cost as defined in (b) (3) above.
d. There is established an interagency work group comprised of one representative from the Department of Administrative Services, the Department of Natural Resources and Environmental Control, the Delaware Economic Development Office, the Department of Transportation, and the Department of Health and Social Services. This work group shall be known as the State Materials Recycling Team (SMRT) and it’s members shall be appointed by the respective Department Heads. The Chair of the SMRT will be selected by the team’s membership. The work group’s primary purposes shall be:
(1) to educate state agencies about recycling and to promote the purchase of recycled products as called for in this Subsection,
(2) to develop a methodology for tracking purchases made in accordance with this section,
(3) to review and assess State agency recycling practices, and
(4) to report to the Governor and the General Assembly on an annual basis its findings and conclusions with respect to the above purposes.”
Approved September 14, 2000