SACRAMENTO (CBS 5) – State Senator Loni Hancock (D-Oakland) has introduced a measure that aims to prevent illegal mattress dumping in California.

Her solution is a bill that would force mattress makers and sellers to help get them off the streets. The bill would require them to pick-up the old mattresses or contribute $25 for each mattress sold to a special fund.

Hancock announced the measure Monday morning in West Oakland, in front of three trucks filled with illegally dumped mattresses. She said more than 5,000 mattresses were abandoned on public property in Oakland last year, and more than 20 are recovered every day in Richmond.

“It’s a health problem…these mattresses, when they’re outside, attract rodents. They attract mold, germs,” Hancock said.

The bill, SB1118, cleared its first hurdle Monday when it was passed 5 to 1 in a senate environmental committee. It now goes to another senate committee for consideration.

“It will set up a recycling and recovery program for mattresses here in California…very much like what we have for bottle and cans and electronic waste,” Hancock explained.

The mattress industry opposes the measure. The International Sleep Products Association told ConsumerWatch the “vast majority” of mattresses are disposed of properly. It also says Hancock’s bill would drive up the cost of buying a mattress.

(Copyright 2012 by CBS San Francisco. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.)


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