The City of Phoenix wants to increase what it charges stores to get back stray shopping carts.
“We've seen an increase in carts that have no identifying marks, so we're not able to identify which retailer they belong to, so we're not able to retrieve those costs from the retailers,” said compliance manager Patrick Ravenstein. “That becomes a cost to the city of retrieve them and there’s no return on that investment.”
The city contracts with Arizona Cart Services for shopping cart retrieval. Stores that do not have an agreement with the company are currently charged $25 per cart – but the city hopes to double that to $50.
"That still won't bring us up to cost recovery,” Ravenstein says, adding cart retrieval currently costs Phoenix around $40,000 a year. He said they average just more than 2,000 citizen complaints per year for stray carts.
Phoenix City Council is expected to vote on the increase this fall. To report a stray shopping cart in your area, click here.