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  • Monterey County Animal Control Program Advisory Board

    Monterey County Animal Control Program Advisory Board will meet Thursday, April 27th at 3:30 pm at the Monterey County Animal Services Center located at 160 Hitchcock Road in Salinas

    4/24/2017 11:15:32 AM

  • Taking Back Unwanted Drugs, Saturday, April 29, 2017

    On Saturday, April 29, from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. local law enforcement and the Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) will give the public the opportunity to prevent pill abuse and theft by ridding their homes of potentially dangerous expired, unused, and unwanted prescription drugs.

    4/17/2017 10:15:00 AM

  • Consumers Warned Not to Use Certain Skin Creams Due to Possible Health Risk

    The California Department of Public Health today warned consumers not to use certain skin creams that have tested positive for high levels of mercury. Mercury is a toxic chemical and regular or prolonged exposure can result in mercury poisoning.



FAQ – Frequently Asked Questions



Published on . Last modified on October 25, 2016

Recycling and Resource Recovery Services implements and promotes recycling and waste reduction programs throughout the unincorporated areas of Monterey County.  We facilitate waste diversion efforts by providing technical assistance, resources, and educational materials. 

We also administer the countywide Used Motor Oil and Filter Recycling Program.  These are some of the most-frequently asked questions about our recycling services.  (Be sure to check Related Articles at the bottom of the screen too!)

Q: I have questions about my garbage/recycling service. Who do I contact?

A: Refer to this website’s Waste & Recycling Haulers list for contact information.

Q: What can I put in my curbside recycling bin?

A: You can put clean glass, plastics (#1-7), cans, paper, cardboard and other recyclable materials in your curbside recycling bin.

Q: Do I qualify for an exemption from mandatory garbage collection?

A: You may qualify if:

  • The property is either undeveloped or vacant, or
  • All solid waste produced on the property is recycled or composted, or
  • The property has a long, narrow, or steep driveway where garbage/recycling collection equipment is unable to properly and safely operate.

Q: How do I apply for an exemption from mandatory garbage collection?

A: To apply you must complete and submit the Mandatory Garbage Exemption Application along with any applicable fees.



Q: I like to personally change the oil in my vehicles. What do I do with my used oil and filters?

A: There are several ways to recycle used oil and filters. You can drop off the oil and filters yourself at any of the participating drop off centers in Monterey County. Another option is curbside collection through your local garbage and recycling hauler.

Q: I own a boat. Where can I dispose of my used oil and filters?

A: There are used oil and filter collection centers located in the Monterey, Santa Cruz, and Moss Landing harbors. For more information please contact the Monterey County Health Department at (831) 755-4505 or 1-800-CLEANUP.

Q: I’m a grower and do not qualify for curbside oil collection service. What do I do with my used oil and filters?

A: There are free agricultural oil and filter drop off sites in Salinas, Hollister, King City and Santa Cruz for growers that produce 27 gallons or less of used motor oil per month and a 55 gallon drum or less of used oil filters every 6 months. Please contact each site to make an appointment.


Q: I love to recycle and reuse, but where can I take my different materials?

A: Refer to our Reduce, Reuse & Recycle and Business & Commercial Reuse and Recycling guides for more information on your recycling needs.

Q: Do you offer any bulk educational materials about recycling?

A: Yes, we have brochures, flyers and pamphlets for distribution. Contact us at (831) 755-4505 for more information.

Q: Where is the closest buy-back center for my bottles and cans?

A: Look under “Recycling Centers” in our Reduce, Reuse & Recycle guide. Please call the centers to verify hours of operation.


Q: What is AB2176? How do I know if a public gathering or community event qualifies asan AB 2176 Special Event?

A: An AB 2176 Special Event is an event at a large venue that admits over 2,000 people per day and charges admission. AB 2176 is intended to increase opportunities for recycling and divert from landfills the waste materials generated by the largest events and venues in California.

Q: As a promoter of an AB 2176 Special Event, how many days in advance should I submit a written Waste Reduction and Recycling Plan (WRRP) to the County?

A: The WRRP should be submitted to the Environmental Health Division, Recycling and Resource Recovery Services, at least 30 days prior to the first day of the event for evaluation and recommendations. For more information, see Special Events Recycling.


Q: I want to start recycling at my business. What services do you offer?

A: The Monterey County Environmental Health Division, Recycling and Resource Recovery Services, offers free commercial waste assessments for businesses in the unincorporated areas of the county. Please contact us for more information at (831) 755-4505 or by email.

Q: What are the benefits of becoming a Certified Green Business?

A: A Certified Green Business:

  • Improves employee morale & the health of the workplace
  • Holds a marketing edge over the competition
  • Strengthens its bottom line through operating efficiencies
  • Is recognized as an environmental leader in the community

Q: How can my business become “Green”?

A: Refer to the Monterey Bay Area Green Business Program or contact your Monterey County Green Business Program coordinator.

Q: I would like to start a recycling business. How can the County help me?

A: The Central Coast Recycling Market Development Zone (CCRMDZ) program can provide attractive, low interest rate loans, technical assistance and free product marketing to businesses located in the Monterey, Santa Cruz, San Benito, and San Luis Obispo Cities and Counties that use materials from the waste stream to manufacture their products. For additional information, contact us at (831) 755-4505.

Q: Who is affected by mandatory commercial recycling?  

A: Commercial businesses that generate four (4) cubic yards or more of solid waste per week and multi-family residential complexes of five (5) units or more must implement a recycling program.  Learn more about mandatory commercial recycling (AB 341) here.


Q: I work for the County and would like to start a recycling program in my building. How do I get started?

A: We offer free waste assessments and assistance for starting or improving recycling programs in County buildings. Contact us at (831) 755-4505

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