Portantino Dishwasher Bill Inspired by the Glendale Environmental Coalition Headed to the Governor’s Desk

Wednesday, August 31 2022

For Immediate Release: August 31, 2022

Contact: Lerna Shirinian, (818) 409-0400


Portantino Dishwasher Bill Inspired by the Glendale Environmental Coalition Headed to the Governor’s Desk

Sacramento, CA - Senate Bill 1255, a measure introduced by Senator Anthony J. Portantino (D – Burbank) which seeks to reduce waste in K–12 schools, is headed to the Governor’s desk for signature.  SB 1255 would establish a dishwasher grant program to address the state’s single-use trash and waste crisis.  The idea for the bill was brought to Senator Portantino by members of the Glendale Environmental Coalition and Benjamin Franklin Elementary's Green Lunchroom.

“It’s time to step up efforts to reduce single-use waste in our schools and installing commercial dishwashers is key to achieving the goal,” stated Senator Portantino.  “I am very grateful to the Glendale Environmental Coalition and Green Lunchroom for suggesting idea for this creative solution to eliminating single-use waste while educating students about the value of conservation and environmental protection.  It turns out we had it right decades ago when schools washed and reused plates, knives, and forks.  With today’s environmentally sound water-efficient dishwashers, we can make a positive impact for this generation and the next.”

Commercial dishwashers use little water, heat to high temperatures for complete sanitation, dry quickly, and are fast and energy efficient, lowering the number of single used products.  Machines have 15-year lifecycle, provide significant financial savings over time and offset waste management costs that continue to rise.

SB 1255 would establish the Dishwasher Grant Program for waste reduction in K–12 schools and would be administered by the Department of Education.  The Department would provide grants to school districts and charter schools for the purchase and installation of commercial dishwashers at the school sites and campuses. 

SB 1255 would require the Department of Education to award grants of up to $40,000 per kitchen of a school to develop administrative guidelines for implementation of the program.  The bill would also require the Department to develop materials and conduct outreach to those local educational agencies about the program and authorize them to work with the State Department of Education, or other relevant state agencies for purposes of the program.

“Industrial dishwashers are the key to waste reduction in cafeterias.  SB 1255 provides the funding needed for K-12 schools throughout California to install them, freeing schools to transition their lunchrooms from single-use to reusable food ware,” stated Monica Campagna with the Glendale Environmental Coalition.  “We do not have a bottomless well of resources on this earth.  We must take care of the things we have and use them wisely.  Upgrading to dishwashers and reusables is key to a pivotal shift with multiple environmental and cost benefits.”