Opposition to Bottle Recycling Fee: SB 996

RecycleThe legislative session has ended and this bill was not called up for a vote. The bottle bill is saved for now.

The League of Women Voters of Litchfield County opposes SB 996: AN ACT ESTABLISHING A BOTTLE RECYCLING FEE IN LIEU OF A REFUNDABLE DEPOSIT. Please contact your Connecticut State Senator and urge them to oppose this bill.

The State League has joined forces with ten other environmentally and politically concerned organizations to oppose this bill. Read the Bottle Bill Coalition Memorandum here: CT Bottle bill Coalition Memo 2017-04

This bill introduced by the Environmental Committee would replace the $.05 redeemable deposit with a minimum $.04 tax.

Public Hearing Testimony, from first selectmen, private citizens, glass manufacturers, environmental groups, recycling action groups and recycling facilities is overwhelmingly in opposition to this bill moving forward. Concerns about increased pollution and the lack of marketability of materials collected through the single stream recycling collection are brought to light, but the bill has moved forward.

The few letters of testimony in favor of this bill come from store owners who would favor eliminating the cost of collecting redeemables from their overhead. HB 5618 would increase the handling fee paid by the distributors to the stores and redemption centers for handling the returns. This fee has not been increased in the 37 years the bottle law has been in effect.  SAY YES TO A MODERNIZED BOTTLE BILL!

Note: HB 5618 may be amended to expand the Bottle Law to include additional beverage containers such as teas, sports drinks and juices – an effort the LWV has supported in the past.

SB 996 would cost tax payers an estimated $57 million per year.
SB 996 would eliminate 500-600 container redemption jobs.
SB 996 would increase litter-related costs by up to $2 million annually.
SB 996 would decrease the beverage container recycling rate. The Bottle Law has been a success in recycling beverage containers, with about a 50% return rate.

The League of Women Voters USA has a position on Waste Management in favor of promoting policies that reduce the generation and promote the reuse and recycling of solid and hazardous wastes.

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