On Thursday, a broad coalition of local property owners/managers, retailers, philanthropic groups and social-services advocates applauded members of the Arizona House for approving legislation that targets unauthorized donation bins. The measure, SB 1504, was approved on a 56-0 vote and now heads to the desk of Governor Doug Ducey for his consideration.
“We thank SB 1504 sponsor Sen. Kavanagh and members of the Arizona Legislature for their overwhelming, bipartisan support of this important property-rights legislation,” said Joel Moyes, a Phoenix-area retail developer and State Director of the International Council of Shopping Centers (ICSC). “SB 1504 will give property owners a powerful new tool to maintain the safety and attractiveness of their shopping centers for the public, and we urge Governor Ducey to sign this legislation into law.”
Members of Fight the Blight: The Arizona Coalition for Responsible Donation Bin Policy sought SB 1504 in order to combat the growing problem of unauthorized donation bins on private property. Large, steel donation bins – soliciting clothing, shoes, books and more – now number over 7,000 in metro Phoenix alone. Frequently they crowd together on private property in shopping center parking lots – attracting graffiti and becoming a dumping ground for old mattresses, furniture and other debris. The bins are commonly placed without any pre-approval, creating a costly headache for the property owner.
SB 1504 sailed through the Legislature without a single “no” vote on the House or Senate floor – illustrating recognition of the growing problem posed by unauthorized donation bins. Currently, when faced with an unauthorized bin, the property owner/manager is forced to track down the bin operator based on contact information that is often vague or non-existent. In some instances, the property owner/manager has even faced legal threats or lawsuits when they finally take action to remove the bin.
If signed into law, SB 1504 should alleviate the bulk of these problems. Its provisions include:
- Donation-bin operators must receive signed, notarized permission – before placing a bin – from the property owner or their designated agent;
- All donation bins must clearly and conspicuously display the name and contact information for its owner;
- If a donation bin is placed without proper authorization, the property owner/manager may have it removed and is not liable for any losses associated with the disposal of its contents.
Out-of-state and for-profit entities dominate the donation-bin industry. Numerous so-called charities that benefit from the bin revenues have been unmasked as shams. In November 2015, Attorney General Mark Brnovich issued a Consumer Alert warning donors about unscrupulous donation-bin operators.
To learn more, visit: FightTheBlightAZ.com.