Sustainable Funding Subgroup
What options could DEQ pursue to achieve sustainable funding?
The 2050 Vision and Framework for Action needs to build a solid foundation in order for Oregon to achieve its vision. Two important actions to create that foundation include researching funding options and securing stable funding. DEQ’s Materials Management program receives no funding from the state general fund. The program is currently funded through annual solid waste permit fees charged to disposal facilities and tip fees on each ton of waste disposed at municipal waste landfills and incinerators. The tip fees were last changed more than twenty years ago and they have never been adjusted for inflation. Historically, disposal was growing and funding was stable. However, since 2008, the economic recession and new recovery efforts have lead to deep cuts in DEQ programs including the elimination of staff positions, hazardous waste collection events and grants. The 2050 Vision also identifies multiple actions that will further reduce waste generation and increase composting and recycling in Oregon. Reductions in waste disposal will result in decreasing revenue. Fees on the solid waste system support many current DEQ activities.
If the only charge of DEQ’s Materials Management program were keeping waste out of landfills, then a funding model that relied on disposal tonnage would make sense. But to achieve the 2050 Vision, including work across the full lifecycle of materials, while we continue to push recovery up and disposal down, the current funding model may not be sustainable. This subgroup will analyze DEQ’s funding sources, trends, and options for different funding sources. The group will also explore the externalities (the costs to society that aren’t currently reflected in disposal and product prices) associated with disposal and the full life cycle of materials and how this might this inform different options to restore and sustain funding for this work.
January 7, 2014
October 29, 2013
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