Fairfax County Considering Legislation To Curb Abandoned Shopping Carts Problem

Abandoned shopping carts are likely to remain in place in Fairfax County.

County staff recommend against passing legislation that would allow the county to remove abandoned shopping carts and charge a fine of up to $ 300 to the owner.

The Virginia General Assembly this year passed a law allowing jurisdictions to adopt stricter legal measures to contain the spread of carts in the region.

If the Fairfax County Board of Supervisors approves the measure, the county can notify the owner of a cart to remove it after fifteen days. The owner will have to pay a fee of up to $ 300 per cart. If someone uses a cart outside of the cart owner’s premises, the county could be fined up to $ 500.

It is not known how widespread the problem of abandoned shopping carts is in the county.

County staff note that the legislation could help reduce the “visual clutter” of unused and neglected shopping carts in the area, especially if they interfere with roads and sidewalks, but it would also be incredibly difficult to enforce the legislation and to continue shopping. carts at bay.

“The enabling legislation falls short of what is needed to establish an effective shopping cart ordinance for the county,” according to meeting material.

Staff suggested the county consider new legislation that would require businesses to monitor, control and prevent the removal of carts.

More awareness and education on the issue, as well as the voluntary implementation of an “abandoned carts prevention plan” was also suggested.

The council’s land use policy committee expects the issue to be addressed at a December 8 meeting.

Photo via David Clarke / Unsplash

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Peggy P. Gilmore