Misplaced shopping carts are the center of a new Glendale city ordinance

The Glendale City Council passed an ordinance related to shopping carts as stolen and abandoned carts are a growing problem for many cities.

The ordinance aims to keep the carts on the retailers’ properties – rounding up wayward or stolen shopping carts is actually a multi-million dollar task in Arizona.

Before, Glendale Police officers would retrieve the carts, store them in a city facility, and call the retailer to pick them up. That won’t happen anymore after Glendale leaders voted to approve a new law.

"There was nothing in state law that told a business owner, ‘here’s what you need to do to make sure your property remains on your property and isn’t’ removed in violation of other statutes,'" explained Rick St. John, Glendale Deputy City Manager.

Now, Glendale businesses must pay for cart retrieval services, or install tracking or locking devices on all new shopping carts, or face a fine.

City leaders say the problem has noticeably increased in the last few years as the homeless population grows.

"Between the panhandling thing that happened recently and this, it seems they’re definitely cracking down on the homeless people in the area," said Glendale resident Garrett Gill.

Glendale officials say this new law targets public blight, and not the homeless. Some say it likely won’t change people’s shopping cart habits.

"I don’t think most people care enough to put their cart back in the designated spot," Gill said. "I don’t think most people care if they take a cart off the lot."

The new law goes into effect on March 30. Existing businesses have until October first to get into compliance with the new law.

Glendale officials say they'll be sending out notices to businesses and will help them get in compliance.

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