The San Diego County Grand Jury issued a report today urging the repeal of the 1919 ordinance prohibiting the city from charging for trash collection at single-family homes.

The report will force the City Council to vote whether its members agree with the grand jury’s recommendations, including whether to put a measure on the ballot to repeal the ordinance.

Within 90 days, the City Council must reply and say whether it plans to implement that recommendation, whether it requires further analysis or whether it will not be implemented.

Councilman Carl DeMaio is urging his colleagues to reject the idea of a trash tax hike in its formal response. However, council members such as Council President Ben Hueso and Councilwoman Marti Emerald have said they want to look at the issue.

And other council members such as Todd Gloria have said they want to look at the idea of tax increases in general, as I chronicled in this Sunday story.

The grand jury says the People’s Ordinance is “inequitable” because it requires only some residents to pay and its repeal would free up money in the city’s “cash-starved” general fund, which pays for services such as public safety, libraries and parks. The report also says that because some residents receive trash collection for free, they have little incentive to recycle or reduce their trash.


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