Chapter 5.65 SHOPPING CART MANAGEMENT, REMOVAL, IMPOUND, RETRIEVAL AND DISPOSAL
5.65.030 Required signs on carts.
Every shopping cart owned or provided for the use of customers by any business establishment in the city must have a sign permanently affixed to it that contains the following information:
A. The name of the owner of the shopping cart or the name of the business establishment where the shopping cart is in lawful use, or both;
B. Notification to the public of the procedure to be used for authorized removal of the shopping cart from the premises;
C. Notification to the public that the unauthorized removal of the shopping cart from the premises or the unauthorized possession of the shopping cart off premises is a violation of state and city laws;
D. A telephone number to contact to report the location of an abandoned shopping cart; and
E. An address where the shopping cart can be returned to the business establishment. (Ord. 653, § 1; 1976 Code § 5-13.03).
5.65.040 Removal or possession of abandoned shopping carts prohibited.
A. It is unlawful to either temporarily or permanently remove a shopping cart from the premises of a business establishment without the express prior written approval of the storeowner.
B. It is unlawful to be in possession of a shopping cart that has been removed from the premises of a business establishment unless it is in the process of being immediately returned to the business establishment.
C. It is unlawful to leave or abandon a shopping cart at a location other than the premises of the business establishment with the intent to temporarily or permanently deprive the storeowner of possession of the shopping cart. (Ord. 653, § 1; 1976 Code § 5-13.04).
5.65.050 Authority to impound.
Pursuant to California Business and Professions Code Section 22435.7, the city may impound any abandoned shopping cart when the shopping cart has a sign affixed as required by MMC 5.65.030. The city may retrieve and immediately dispose of any abandoned shopping carts that lack the signs required by MMC 5.65.030. (Ord. 653, § 1; 1976 Code § 5-13.05).
5.65.060 Notice of retrieval.
The city shall provide the storeowner notice of retrieval within twenty-four hours following the impoundment. The notice will inform the owner as to the location where the shopping cart may be claimed. (Ord. 653, § 1; 1976 Code § 5-13.06).
5.65.070 Authority to store.
The impounded shopping cart may be stored by the city at a location that is both reasonably convenient to the storeowner of the shopping cart and is open for business at least six hours of each day, Monday through Friday. (Ord. 653, § 1; 1976 Code § 5-13.07).
5.65.080 Authority to dispose.
Any shopping cart not reclaimed from the city within thirty days of receipt of a notice of retrieval by the storeowner may be sold or otherwise disposed of by the city. (Ord. 653, § 1; 1976 Code § 5-13.08).
5.65.090 Reclamation by storeowners.
Any shopping cart reclaimed by the storeowner within three business days following the date of actual notice of impound shall be released and surrendered to the storeowner at no charge whatsoever, including the waiver of any impound and storage fees or fines that would otherwise be applicable pursuant to MMC 5.65.100 and 5.65.110. Any shopping cart reclaimed within the three business day period shall not be deemed an occurrence for the purposes of MMC 5.65.100. (Ord. 653, § 1; 1976 Code § 5-13.09).
5.65.100 Administrative fines.
The city may impose an administrative penalty on the storeowner in an amount not to exceed fifty dollars for each occurrence in excess of three during a specified six-month period for failure to retrieve shopping carts in accordance with MMC 5.65.090. (Ord. 653, § 1; 1976 Code § 5-13.10).
5.65.110 Recovery of costs.
The city is authorized to recover from storeowners all actual costs incurred for impounding a shopping cart if the cart is not retrieved pursuant to MMC 5.65.090. (Ord. 653, § 1; 1976 Code § 5-13.11).
5.65.120 Shopping cart removal prevention plan.
Every storeowner providing shopping carts to its customers shall develop and implement a specific written plan to prevent customers from removing shopping carts from the premises. The plan must include the following elements:
A. Notice to Customers. Written notification shall be provided to customers that removal of shopping carts from the premises is prohibited and a violation of state law and the Millbrae Municipal Code. This notice may be provided in the form of flyers, warnings on shopping bags and shopping carts, or any other form of written notification that will effectively notify customers of the law.
B. Signs. Signs shall be placed in appropriate places near door exits and near parking lot exits warning customers that shopping cart removal is prohibited and constitutes a violation of state law and the Millbrae Municipal Code.
C. Physical Measures. Specific physical measures shall be implemented by storeowners to prevent shopping cart removal from the premises. Examples of physical measures that may be implemented are: installing disabling devices on all shopping carts; posting of a security guard to prevent customers from removing shopping carts from the premises; security deposits required for use of all shopping carts; the rental or sale of shopping carts that can be temporarily or permanently used for transport of purchases, or any combination of the above as necessary to effectively prevent shopping cart removal from the premises. (Ord. 653, § 1; 1976 Code § 5-13.12).
5.65.130 Timelines and approval process for shopping cart removal prevention plan.
Every business establishment shall submit a proposed plan for preventing shopping cart removal for approval to the community development department within sixty days after adoption of the ordinance codified in this chapter and by July 1st of each year thereafter. Any business establishment which opens after the adoption of the ordinance codified in this chapter will submit a shopping cart removal prevention plan to the community development department for approval within sixty days of the approval date on their city business license application. Any storeowner who fails to submit a shopping cart removal prevention plan in accordance with this section shall be subject to a fifteen hundred dollar civil penalty.
A storeowner has thirty days from the date of city approval of the plan to implement its shopping cart removal prevention plan. If the proposed plan is the same as the previous years, prevention measures shall continue to be implemented unless the city indicates the plan needs to be modified. Unless otherwise agreed, modifications to a plan required by the city shall be implemented by the storeowner within thirty days of notification. (Ord. 653, § 1; 1976 Code § 5-13.13).
5.65.140 Annual plan evaluation report.
A. A storeowner must submit an annual plan evaluation report to the community development department of the city. The report shall include, but is not limited to, an assessment of the effectiveness of the measures used to prevent the removal of shopping carts from the premises; an inventory of shopping carts owned or used by the business establishment and the number of shopping carts replaced by the establishment due to repair, loss, theft or abandonment. Any storeowner who fails to submit an annual plan evaluation report in accordance with this section by July 1st of each year shall be subject to a fifteen hundred dollar civil penalty. If a prevention plan was in place the previous year, the annual plan evaluation report shall identify the measures used and assess the effectiveness of the measures used in the prior year.
B. If a storeowner has been fined by the city for more than three occurrences in any six-month period pursuant to MMC 5.65.100, the city may determine that the storeowner’s shopping cart removal prevention plan is inadequate and require that additional removal prevention measures be added to the plan and implemented by the storeowner in the next plan period. (Ord. 653, § 1; 1976 Code § 5-13.14).
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