UPDATE: Governor John Kitzhaber signed the modernized Bottle Bill on Thursday morning.
By Susan Gager
SALEM, Ore. — Soon the deposit on soda bottles, iced tea, milk jugs and any plastic bottle could be going up. State lawmakers have agreed on the most significant expansion since 1971 to Oregon’s landmark Bottle Bill.
“Normally I just throw them away, I throw them into a recycle bin, so a ten cent incentive might work,” said Shawnyn Windham.
The going rate for a deposit on a bottle has been a nickel for decades here in Oregon. If the governor signs the bill, the deposit will change to a dime a bottle.
“Money’s tight right now and these deals they put on with pop, by the time you pay the deposit, you bought two cases of pop,” said Travis Ryan.
The bill aims to expand the redemption system to cover all beverage containers. Proponents say it will keep more than 72 million containers per year out of landfills. For some it’s an incentive to start making trips to the recycling center. For others, the extra nickel is just more money out of their pocket.
“If it’s going to decrease landfill size, then yeah. I support it,” said Kim Seymour.
The bill now expands a deposit on containers for juices, teas, sports drinks, and other beverages that weren’t covered before. The increased deposit will be added by no later than 2018. The legislature says the bill’s success is due in part to cooperation from Oregon grocers, distributors, and recyclers. The Bottle Bill is now with the governor, and he’s indicated he will sign it.