Senate Committee Substitute

SCS/SB 895 - This act creates the Manufacturer Responsibility and Consumer Convenience Equipment Collection and Recovery Act.

The act requires manufacturers of computers or televisions to implement "recovery plans" for the collection of and the recycling or reuse of their obsolete equipment. The recovery plan must be implemented and a copy of the plan submitted to the Department of Natural Resources before the manufacturer can sell its computers or televisions in Missouri. Such manufacturers must also label their equipment to identify themselves as the manufacturer.

Consumers shall not be charged a fee for returning the obsolete equipment to the manufacturer under the recovery plan. Any collection methods offered by a manufacturer must be reasonably convenient and available to consumers in the state. Manufacturers' collection methods may include any or all of the following: a mail-back option for consumers at no charge, a physical collection site, or a collection event. Manufacturers may use existing equipment collection services, or may partner with other manufacturers, businesses or organizations to meet the collection requirements of the act.

Manufacturers shall inform consumers of the recovery plan information by, at minimum, posting the information on a publicly-available website, but manufacturers may also include such information in the equipments' packaging at the time of sale.

Manufacturers are required to submit a report by January 31st of each year to the Department that documents the weight of all computers or televisions collected and recycled or reused during the preceding calendar year. The report shall also document that all equipment was handled in accordance with federal, state, and local laws.

In the case of multiple manufacturers of computers or televisions of the same brand, any one manufacturer may meet the recovery plan requirements of the act for all the others, but in the event that none meet the requirements, all may be liable for violating the act. Manufacturers of a certain brand are responsible for equipment of that brand, regardless of when the equipment was manufactured or if they were the manufacturer at that time.

Retailers are prohibited from selling new computers or televisions in Missouri unless the equipment contains a manufacturer's label and the manufacturer is listed by the Department as having a recovery plan. The act does not require retailers to offer a collection, recycling, or reuse program to consumers for obsolete computers or televisions.

Manufacturers and retailers are not liable for any information on any computers collected under this act. Consumers are responsible for any information left on their equipment.

The Department shall educate consumers about the recycling and reuse of computers and televisions and shall provide a website for this purpose. The website shall include a list of manufacturers' recovery plans as well as dates and locations for collection opportunities.

The Department may conduct audits and inspections as it deems necessary to determine compliance with this act. The Department and the Attorney General shall enforce the provisions of the act. The Attorney General may take action to enjoin any activity in violation of the act. The Department shall issue a written warning to anyone who violates the act's provisions for the first time and such person has 60 days with which to come into compliance. The Department may assess a penalty on manufacturers for certain violations not to exceed $10,000 for second violations, and not to exceed $25,000 for subsequent violations.

Certain proprietary information submitted to the Department in compliance with the act shall not be considered a public record under the Sunshine Law. The Department shall issue an annual report by March 1st to the Senate and House of Representatives using information compiled from manufacturers. The Department shall not impose fees on anyone who recycles or reuses computers or televisions under this act.

The Department shall promulgate rules by July 1, 2009 to implement this act. Any rules shall include standards for recycling and reuse of computers and televisions as described in the act. If federal law is passed that creates a national collection and recycling/reuse plan for computers or televisions, the Department can decide to allow the federal law to pre-empt the provisions of this act. This act shall not be enforced until the Department's rules are promulgated.

Retailers shall not be considered in violation of the act for selling computers or televisions acquired prior to August 28, 2008.


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