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California Lead Acid Battery Fee Recycling Act Effective in April

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The California Lead Acid Battery Recycling Act of 2016 will be effective starting April 1. The act creates a state mandated lead-acid battery fee that will serve as a funding mechanism for clean-up of areas contaminated by lead-acid batteries.

This law is in response to the 2013 series of events at the Exide Technologies battery plant that contaminated an estimated 10,000 homes in southern California.

The money from the fees will be used to clean up areas of the state that have been contaminated by the production and recycling of lead-acid batteries, such as the former Exide battery plant in Los Angeles County.

The following requirements of the California Lead-Acid Battery Recycling Act will apply:

• Any person who buys a replacement lead-acid battery from a retail dealer (includes auto repair dealers) will be charged a $1 California battery fee.

• Consumers will be charged a refundable deposit on lead-acid battery purchases to encourage the return of the used battery for environmental recycling.

• Consumers will receive a credit of the same amount as the refundable deposit if a used lead-acid battery is returned at the time of purchase or up to 45 days later along with this dealer’s receipt.

• The dealer will be required to separately list (line item) the California battery fee on all invoices and collect the $1 fee.

• The dealer will be required to accept used lead-acid batteries without charging a fee.

• The battery fee will be submitted to the Board of Equalization on a quarterly basis, similar to the current California tire fee.

On and after April 1, 2022, the bill will increase the battery fee to $2.

The retail dealer of batteries is required to provide written notice regarding the California battery fee and refundable deposits. The notice requirements do not apply to an auto repair shop that does not sell lead-acid batteries directly to consumers (over the counter) but instead removes nonfunctional/damaged batteries as part of an auto repair dealer service.

KPA has included a “California Lead-Acid Battery Recycling” sign for client use on myKPAonline.com under “Documents”.

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