80th Annual Meeting

WHEREAS, the U.S. Conference of Mayors in 2010 adopted a resolution supporting extended producer responsibility for products; and

WHEREAS, the growing product stewardship movement in the United States seeks to ensure that those who design, manufacture, sell, and use consumer products take responsibility for reducing negative impacts to the economy, environment, public health, and worker safety that occur throughout the lifecycle of a product and its packaging; and

WHEREAS, leaders in the product stewardship field in the U.S. have established new definitions for product stewardship, the act of minimizing health, safety, environmental and social impacts, and maximizing economic benefits of a product and its packaging throughout all lifecycle stages, and extended producer responsibility (EPR), a mandatory type of product stewardship that includes, at a minimum, the requirement that the producers responsible for their product extends to post-consumer management of that product and its packaging; and

WHEREAS, mattresses represent a significant cost for municipalities to manage, where their bulk makes them difficult to handle and expensive to manage in landfills and many waste-to-energy facilities; and

WHEREAS, Connecticut municipalities spend over $1.2 million to manage between 350,000 Ė 450,000 mattresses each year; and

WHEREAS, about 40 million mattresses and box springs are sold in the U.S. each year, where only a small percentage are recycled, despite the fact that when broken down to its component parts, up to 95% of a mattress can be recycled; and

WHEREAS, recycling supports as many as 10 times more jobs as traditional disposal, and supporting mattress recycling, financed by mattress manufacturers through extended producer responsibility laws, will create domestic recycling jobs; and

WHEREAS, illegal dumping of mattresses is a public health and environmental justice issue that all municipalities face; and

WHEREAS, numerous state and local government officials from California, Connecticut, Florida, Iowa, Maine, Massachusetts, Minnesota, Missouri, New York, Oregon, Rhode Island, Tennessee, Texas, Vermont, Washington, and Wisconsin participated in PSIís National Mattress Initiative, which developed model state EPR legislation for mattresses; and

WHEREAS, based on this model, the Connecticut legislature, with leadership from Hartford Mayor Pedro E. Segarra, considered a first in the nation extended producer responsibility law for mattresses that requires manufacturers to finance and manage an end-of-life program for mattresses

NOW, THEREFORE BE IT RESOLVED, that the U.S. Conference of Mayors supports state and federal EPR legislation for mattresses, and will encourage its communities to use EPR as a policy tool to relieve local governments of significant costs of managing mattresses; and

BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED, that the U.S. Conference of Mayors endorses the new product stewardship and extended producer responsibility principles and definitions.