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Cities, Counties Get $7 Million To Enforce Tire Waste Laws

Aired 5/8/13 on KPBS News.

The state is giving money to more than 40 cities and counties in California to fight illegal dumping and storage of old tires.

Old tires stockpiled or dumped illegally - it's a sight that California's recycling agency wants to make disappear. On Tuesday, CalRecycle announced it's awarding seven million dollars in grants to fight the problem

One of the major hazards of stockpiled waste tires is that they can become fuel for dangerous, long-burning fires that release toxic smoke.

"And even if they don't catch fire, stockpiled waste tires - they're breeding grounds for mosquitoes, rats, snakes, that kind of thing," said Heather Jones with CalRecycle.

The agency is dispersing the grant money to more than 40 cities and counties throughout the state to be used in a variety of ways.

"Surveillance and enforcement activities. They can also be used for training for staff or to help businesses with their reporting requirements," Jones explained. "So they do some GPS monitoring, lighting - stuff like that - to prevent dumping."

There's no cost to the state's General Fund for the Waste Tire Enforcement Grant Program. The money comes from a recycling fee charged on every new tire sold in California.

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