Disposal of used alkaline household batteries:

Commonly advertised free electronics recycling programs do not accept alkaline batteries because the cost of the recycling process exceeds the value of the recovered materials. Because of this, most consumers dispose of these items as normal household waste which then gets deposited in landfills.

Worldwide over 10 billion units of alkaline batteries are produced annually. In the US over 80% of all household batteries sold are alkaline type This includes all types and sizes, i.e., AA, AAA, D, C, N, and 9volt.

Some manufacturers claim their alkaline batteries are safe to dispose of in landfills. Officially, the State of California considers all alkaline batteries to be household hazardous waste (HHW). Other states have their own regulations.

“CalRecycle” has some regulatory responsibilities related to "household hazardous waste" (HHW) because it could easily end up in the solid waste stream ( i.e., the “Black Cans”) if people aren't educated.

Here is some information on the CalRecycle website: Main page on batteries:
Waste banned from your trash (including batteries):
Universal Waste, which batteries are considered:

All hazardous waste is ultimately regulated by the Department of Toxic Substances Control (DTSC).
Here is some information from DTSC web site:
https://www.dtsc.ca.gov/HazardousWaste/UniversalWaste/Res_Batteries.cfm Universal Waste:

The City of San Diego has a program for disposal of alkaline batteries. Residents of the City may drop them off at the Miramar hazardous waste site near the entrance to the land fill off highway 52. This can only be done by making an appointment in advance. They are open only on Saturdays. There is no fee for this service.

The County of San Diego offers an alkaline battery disposal program through their Library System. Alkaline batteries may be dropped off at branches during normal business hours and there is no fee charged.

Following is a listing of County Branch Libraries that support this program:

4 S Ranch
Borrego Springs
Casa de Oro
Pine Valley
Rancho Santa Fe
Rancho San Diego
Valley Center

Some commercial companies offer alkaline battery disposal for a fee. Two examples are:
1) “Big Green Box” which offers recycling boxes on line for a fee of $63.00 each which includes return shipping when boxes are filled.
2) Some “Batteries+Bulbs” stores collect alkaline batteries for recycling for a fee of $1.75 per pound.