CHAPTER 8.800: ABANDONED SHOPPING CARTS
Section 8.800.010: Findings.
a) The City Council finds and determines that shopping carts are being removed from businesses and abandoned throughout the City on public and private property.
b) Abandoned shopping carts present a threat to the public health and safety because they obstruct pedestrian and vehicular traffic in the City, increase the operating costs of businesses and cause the City to expend resources unnecessarily to retrieve and remove shopping carts from public and private property.
c) Abandoned shopping carts are typically the result of theft and contribute to the perception of community blight and a reduction of property values in the neighborhoods where they tend to accumulate.
d) In enacting this chapter, the City Council has been mindful of the preemptive effect of state law, in particular Business and Professions Code Sections 22435, et seq., and, in reliance upon Business and Professions Code Section 22435.8, this chapter avoids any express conflict with state law.
e) The City Council finds that any regulatory fee established by this chapter is not a tax as that term is defined in subdivision (e) of Section 1 of Article XIIIC of the California Constitution (Proposition 26) because it is a charge for a specific benefit conferred directly to cart owners which is not provided to those not charged and which does not exceed the reasonable costs of conferring the benefit. Moreover, the regulatory fee established is a charge imposed for the reasonable regulatory costs incurred by the city in the enforcement of this chapter.
Section 8.800.020: Definitions.
a) "Business Premises" means the interior of a cart owner's commercial establishment, adjacent walkways, any loading area, and the parking area (which shall include a parking lot or other adjacent property provided by a commercial establishment for customer parking, including the entire parking lot in a multiple-store shopping center).
b) "Cart Identification Sign" means a sign or engraved surface permanently affixed to a cart which specifies the name of the cart owner or retailer, or both; the telephone number of the cart owner or retailer, or both; a tollfree number for cart retrieval; the individual cart identification number; and a notice to the public that unauthorized removal of the cart from the business premises is a violation of state law and City ordinance.
c) "Cart" or "Shopping Cart" means a basket that is mounted on wheels or a similar device generally used in a retail establishment by a customer for the purpose of transporting goods of any kind. Shopping Cart does not include a cart sold to a customer or owned by a customer for his or her own personal use.
d) "Cart Owner" means the owner or operator of a commercial establishment that provides carts for use by its customers and which owns or controls 10 or more shopping carts on the business premises.
e) "Cart Removal Warning" means a sign or text that is at least 18 inches in width and 24 inches in height using block lettering not less than onehalf inch in width and two (2) inches in height containing a statement in two or more languages to the effect that unauthorized removal of a shopping cart from the business premises, or unauthorized possession of a shopping cart in a location other than the business premises, is a violation of state law and City ordinance.
f) "On-Site Cart Retention System" means one or more of the following measures:
1) Mechanical disabling devices on all shopping carts, which prevent the cart from being removed from the business premises by locking the wheels automatically or otherwise preventing movement of the carts off of the business premises
2) An on-site security guard to prevent customers from removing carts from the business premises
3) Bollards and/or other barriers around the business premises to prevent cart removal, subject to approval of the City's Fire Marshal
4) Obtaining a security deposit from customers for the use of shopping carts on the business premises
5) Any other measure approved by the Director of Community Development as a means of preventing carts from being removed from the business premises.
G) "Sanitized" means one or more of the following measures:
1) Use of onsite cart cleaning and sanitizing systems;
2) Pressure washing;
3) Steam cleaning;
4) Availability of shopping cart sanitization stations for customer use;
5) Availability of cart liners for customer use or purchase;
6) Any other measure approved by the Director of Community Development as a means of cleaning, sanitizing, or eliminating exposure to contaminants that may be found on shopping carts.
Section 8.800.030: On-Site Shopping Cart Retention System Required.
a) Every cart owner shall on or before January 1, 2013 install, operate and maintain an on-site cart retention system.
b) Every cart owner shall at all times contain all shopping carts on the business premises.
Section 8.800.040: Shopping Cart Security After Business Hours.
a) Every cart owner shall lock or otherwise secure all shopping carts during hours when the business premises are not open for business.
Section 8.800.050: Written Permission Required for Cart removal from Business Premises.
a) No person shall be authorized or deemed authorized to remove a shopping cart from the business premises unless he or she is in possession of written permission from the cart owner.
Section 8.800.060: Cart Retrieval Program Required.
a) Every cart owner shall have a cart retrieval program in place, which may include a contract with a cart retrieval service, that is sufficient to respond to complaints from the public or City regarding abandoned carts in a manner that results in the retrieval of the carts within twenty-four (24) hours of receiving the complaint(s).
b) Every retrieved cart shall be sanitized prior to customer use.
Section 8.800.070: Cart Owner Identification Signs Required.
a) Each Cart owned or used within the City shall have a permanently affixed and clearly visible cart identification sign.
b) Each cart owner shall continuously maintain or cause to be maintained the cart identification sign so that all of the required information is accurate and clearly legible.
Section 8.800.080: Cart Removal Warnings Required.
a) Every cart owner shall permanently and prominently post and maintain cart removal warnings on an interior wall of the business premises within two (2) feet of all customer entrances and exits. Cart removal warnings may also be posted on the exterior of the building.
Section 8.800.090: Employee Training Required.
a) Each cart owner shall conduct regular and ongoing employee training to educate new and existing employees about procedures to prevent cart removal from the business premises, including but not limited to the operation of the onsite cart retention system.
Section 8.800.100: City Retrieval of Carts.
a) The City may retrieve an abandoned cart from public property (or private property with the consent of the property owner) in the following circumstances:
1) Where the location of the shopping cart will impede emergency services.
2) When the abandoned cart does not identify the owner of the cart as required in Section 8.800.070.
3) When the city has contacted either the owner or the owner's agent and actually notified them of the abandoned cart and the cart has not been retrieved within seventy-two (72) hours.
Section 8.800.110: Impoundment, Retrieval, Payment of Costs.
a) If the city retrieves a cart, the city shall hold the cart at a location that is reasonably convenient to the owner of the shopping cart and open for at least six (6) hours on business days.
a) Where the city has not already provided notice to the owner that an abandoned cart needs to be retrieved, the city shall notify the owner that the city has impounded their cart and provide information as to the carts location, how the cart may be retrieved, that failure to retrieve the cart may result in the cart's sale or destruction, that the owner will be responsible for the city's costs, and that the city may fine owners after the city has picked up the owner's carts more than three times. In the case of a cart that does not provide adequate identification or markings to determine its owner the city shall only be required to notify the cart owner if the city obtains actual knowledge of the owner's identity.
c) If a cart is not retrieved by its owner within thirty (30) days after the owner has received notice of the cart being impounded, or if the cart's owner cannot be determined, within thirty (30) days after the cart has been impounded, the cart may be sold or destroyed by the city or its agents and/or contractors.
d) The Director or his or her designee may issue an administrative citation of fifty dollars ($50), under the procedures in Chapter 1.050, against any cart owner for any day, after the first three days, during any specified six-month period, in which the city picks up a cart under the circumstances found in Section 8.800.100.
a) No cart shall be released to its owner under the procedures in this section unless the owner pays a fee for the city's actual costs to retrieve and store the cart. The city's costs to retrieve and store may be provided in the Master Fee Schedule.
Section 8.800.120: Immediate Retrieval of Identified Carts.
a) Notwithstanding any other section of this chapter, the City may immediately retrieve a cart that does have the appropriate markings and identification under Section 8.800.070 provided the city actually notifies the owner within twenty-four (24) hours that the city has impounded the cart and provides information to the owner where and how the cart may be retrieved. The city may not collect a fee or impose a fine, nor count a retrieval for purposes of a fine under Section 8.800.110 D., if the cart retrieved by the City under this section, is collected by the owner within three (3) business days of the actual notice to the owner by the City. If the cart is not retrieved within three (3) business days by its owner, the City may collect its actual costs and impose a fine and dispose of the cart consistent with the provisions of Section 8.800.11 0.
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