Support and Improve Municipal Recycling Programs and Save Taxpayer Money
|Sponsor:||Representative Nicole Grohoski, House 132|
|Bill #:||LD 1541|
Monitoring. However, this is a priority issue.
UPDATE: The Committee amended the bill with the Maine DEP amendment and added back in the cost of disposal in addition to the cost of recycling. They also amended the list of compliant products to be listed by UPC instead of brand which will be problematic.
UPDATE: House amended the bill and removed retailer enforcement.
UPDATE: Senate voted 20-15 to amend the bill with major substantive rulemaking. However, bill is being held and we anticipate a revote.
UPDATE: Sure enough, the Senate reconsidered their vote and stripped off the major substantive rulemaking amendment by a 19-15 vote. The bill passed the House and Senate but was sent to the Appropriations Table pending funding which it will very likely receive. That will happen on June 30. The bill will then be sent to Governo Mills for action.
This bill establishes a stewardship program in the State for packaging material, to be operated by a stewardship organization contracted by the Department of Environmental Protection following a competitive bidding process. Under the program, producers of products contained, protected, delivered, presented or distributed in or using packaging material pay into a fund based on the amount by weight of packaging material associated with the products they sell, offer for sale or distribute for sale in or into the State. Producers can wholly or partially offset this payment obligation by implementing independent programs to recycle packaging of the same material type for which they have a payment obligation and can further reduce their payment obligation by reducing the amount of packaging associated with the products they sell, offer for sale or distribute for sale in or into the State or by meeting other program incentives. Producer payments received by the stewardship organization are used to reimburse eligible municipalities for certain recycling and waste management costs. To be eligible for such reimbursements, a municipality must share with the stewardship organization certain data regarding its recycling and waste management costs and must provide for the collection and recycling of packaging material generated in the municipality that is determined to be readily recyclable. In addition to the payment of municipal reimbursements, the stewardship organization is authorized to use producer payments to cover the operational costs for the program, to pay department fees and to make investments in education and infrastructure aimed at reducing packaging waste and improving recycling outcomes in the State.