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Bottle Bill Dies in Conference Committee

Legislators decide to take the Bottle Bill amendment out of the Jobs Act.

The Bottle Bill will not make it to the Governor's desk this year. 

The controversial proposal was included as an amendment to the Senate Jobs Bill, yet scrapped Monday in conference committee, according to an aide to its sponsor, Sen. Robert Hedlund (R-Weymouth). The Jobs Bill is expected to be set before Gov. Deval Patrick today, July 31, the last day of the legislative session.

The amendment had faced strong opposition in the House, with Speaker Robert DeLeo describing it as a tax. Hedlund disputed this view, saying that taxes can't be redeemed.

The expansion to the 31-year-old law designed to promote recycling and reduce litter would have added plastic bottles used for water, juices, iced tea and sports drinks to the list of containers subject to the 5-cent bottle deposit. Under the law, these types of containers carry a 5-cent redeemable deposit that can be collected when they are returned to the store. 

Opponents said the bill would have increased costs for businesses and consumers. Supporters said it would have encouraged more recycling.

Governor Patrick said that the state could collect up to $58 million a year on unredeemed bottles, and that the program cuts the cost to city of recycling the bottles. 

What are your thoughts on the Bottle Bill expansion? Do you think the time has come to increase the types of bottles that should be redeemed or do you think that it is another tax ? Would you support it if it is brought forward again next year? Let us know in comments.

Mel Cross August 01, 2012 at 03:40 PM
I know the lady that raids all the Blue recyle bins on trash day is very disappointed.... This was going to be a windfall for her..........
Carolyn O'Daly August 01, 2012 at 04:21 PM
I recycle because it's free and decreases the amount of trash I have to pay to get rid of. I'm not poor but since I'm retired I don't like to waste money. Those that do probably have too much of it!
J Butler August 01, 2012 at 11:35 PM
i would have preferred $1 per alcohol related bottle/can, and the rest of the bill. i recycle, nothing tough about it. i'm very tired of the beer/wine/nip bottles discarded wherever, maybe if the deposit was a little steeper, more attention would be paid to recycling. plenty of people in town would welcome the extra $$$
Mel Cross August 02, 2012 at 01:08 AM
J, Thats the open container law........pour it in a DD cup and whip it out the window.......but it comes full cirlce for the guy on the bike/trailer he comes by and picks them up....
Ryan Scudder August 02, 2012 at 10:48 AM
Just another example of you get what you vote for, with all the whinning that the state needs more money why wouldnt you pass this bill, i love the part about that its a TAX of course its a tax but at least you get 100% reimbursment when ever you want the money instead of waiting untin April. God i hate corrupt polotics.

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