July 2005

Better bottle bill receives support, but dies in New York State Senate

Environmental groups praised the New York State Assembly for passing the Bigger, Better, Bottle Bill (A2517B-DiNapoli) June 20, and called on the State Senate to take up the measure before they adjourned.

The Assembly passed the Bigger, Better Bottle Bill by a vote of 98 to 40, with broad-based bipartisan support. This is the first time since the bill was originally introduced in 2002 that it has been voted on in the Assembly. The bill, which has eight Senate cosponsors (S1290B-LaValle) and strong support among the Senate minority, now goes to the Senate.

The “Bigger, Better Bottle Bill” (A2517B, DiNapoli/S1290B LaValle) would extend the current 5-cent container deposit law to include non-carbonated beverages like bottled water and iced tea. It would also require beverage companies to return the unclaimed deposits to the state to fund recycling and other environmental protection programs.

Despite the Bigger, Better, Bottle Bill's tremendous popular support, with endorsements from more than 350 local governments, small businesses, and a broad range of groups from across New York State, the New York State Senate killed the expansion of the current bill by recessing on June 24th without even voting on the proposal. Stiff opposition has been felt from well-financed industry groups such as beer wholesalers, soda and beverage companies, and supermarket and convenience stores.


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