the more liberal the city...
...the more illegal it is to recycle other people's items.
new york times: "Mayor Michael R. Bloomberg signed into law a bill that greatly increased penalties for people who are caught ... stealing metal, paper or other recyclable material that is left at a curb. Instead of the $100 ticket ... [you can] now be fined at least $2,000 and could have his van impounded."
usa today: "Pilfering cans, bottles and other recyclables from bins is already illegal in many places, including San Francisco and New York City."
usa today: "In San Francisco, poachers can be fined up to $500 and get six months jail time. In New York, thieves are subject to arrest, vehicle impoundment and fines of up to $5,000."
usa today: "California lawmakers are also considering legislation that would make large-scale, anonymous recycling more difficult by forcing scrap and paper recyclers to require picture identification for anyone bringing in more than $50 worth of cans, bottles or newspapers and to pay such individuals with checks rather than cash."
usa today: "In Westchester County, New York, a proposal would make large-scale curbside recycling theft punishable by time behind bars and fines of up to $2,000."