Statement by the Coalition to Update the Massachusetts Bottle Bill
August 3, 2011
The advocates working to update the Massachusetts Bottle Bill filed a ballot initiative today in order to preserve the option of going to the ballot.
While we hope the legislature will do the right thing and update the bottle bill, we are preserving the option today of taking this issue to the voters as a ballot question in the 2012 election. According to a recent poll, 77% of Massachusetts residents support an update of the bottle bill. It is long overdue. The bottle bill is a proven success. It has successfully reduced litter in our parks, beaches and roadways. It has increased our recycling and it has reduced the cost of waste disposal for taxpayers in our cities and towns. Over 200 cities and towns in the Commonwealth support the update. Many legislators, businesses and civic leaders support the update; including Governor Deval Patrick, Governor Michael Dukakis, Mayor Thomas Menino, State Senator Robert Hedlund, state Representative Dan Winslow, Roger Berkowitz of Legal Seafoods, the League of Women Voters, and many more. The proposed update of the bottle bill merely adds water, juice and energy drink bottles to the beer and soda bottles and cans we already collect. It only makes sense.
For those who mistakenly argue the bottle bill is a tax, even the Mass Taxpayers Foundation disagrees. No one needs to pay a penny, if they redeem their bottles and cans.