Hawaii Governor Signs Bottle Bill

Arlington, VA - Hawaii Governor Benjamin J. Cayetano signed the nation's 11th bottle bill into law. According to the Container Recycling Institute (CRI), deposit laws, or "bottle bills," have been proposed in nearly every U.S. state, but no new container deposit law has been enacted since 1986, when California became the 10th state requiring refundable deposits on beverage containers.

After numerous legislative hearings in 2001 and 2002, the bottle bill passed the House and Senate on May 1st by votes of 50 to 37 and 25 to 19, respectively. "The beverage industry's 30-year-old recycled arguments against the bottle bill were just not credible," said Rep. Hermina Morita, sponsor of the Hawaii bottle bill.

The Hawaii bottle bill would impose a nickel deposit on all beverage cans and bottles except milk beginning in 2005. The deposits would be refunded to consumers when the beverage containers are returned for recycling. The bill also phases in an additional charge of up to one and a half cents per beverage container that the state Health Department would use to support recycling.