GUEST POST: Act Today! Proposed AZ Bill May Eliminate Clothing Donations in Your Area
Do you support charitable giving and clothing donation programs in your community? Your help is desperately needed ASAP, so Act Today!
The Arizona legislature is about to pass a statewide bill that threatens to eliminate clothing & shoe donation bins in your area.
The bill would prevent charities from partnering with donation bin operators like American Textile Recycling Service (ATRS) and would significantly infringe on their rights to raise funds through clothing donation partnerships like these. This means these charities will lose the fundraising revenue they rely on each month for local programs and services. We believe communities have the right to choose which charities to support, and the right to more textile recycling and donation options – not less.
Who is behind this bill?
The bill SB 1504 is being sponsored by Sen. John Kavanagh of Fountain Hills, and pushed by the International Council of Shopping Centers and Goodwill Industries. Why is Goodwill pushing this bill?
On the surface, the bill seems to protect property owners from liability if they decide to remove a donation bin from their property. However, the hidden purpose is to make it virtually impossible for donation bins to be placed in communities at all, by creating a complicated notarization process that’s frankly cumbersome, unfair and very biased.
Why is that so bad?
You may think, it seems reasonable to require that a donation bin have permission to place a bin on private property, right? Sure but our municipalities, property owners and zoning officials already have procedures in place for this. Some cities require a permitting fee, other cities have guidelines about where bins can be placed and yet others create official city-sponsored drop off centers for these items so they don’t go to landfill. So why does the State of Arizona want to get involved?
Why are only certain charities being singled out?
Traditionally, when charities or non profit organizations want to solicit donations on a property, they work out an arrangement with local businesses and property managers as a private matter, just like the Salvation Army bell ringers at Christmas time or high school boosters car wash on a weekends.
This bill goes too far in requiring the permission to be granted only in writing, and only in writing if notarized. Many local Arizona charities have petitioned and spoken out against the bill as unfair, including Susan G. Komen, Big Brothers, Big Sisters, Mothers Against Drunk Driving and others.
What can YOU do?
Please call Senator John Kavanagh’s office TODAY!! Ask him to accept the recommendations to amend the bill, so property owners and local charities can easily, and conveniently offer donation options in our community. His number is 602-926-5170.
Kristin Greene is the Vice President of Federal & Local Affairs at The Molera Alvarez Group in Phoenix, AZ. She is also a government affairs consultant for ATRS and actively advocating to change this proposed bill.