Lawmakers are currently debating the “Bigger, Better Bottle Bill,” which proposes to increase the bottle deposit from 5 cents to 10 cents, and add a deposit to bottles and cans of wine, liquor, distilled spirit coolers, and other beverages. The bill, now in committee in the State Senate, would also increase the handling fee for processing the return from 3.5 cents to 6 cents.
Advocates of the bill believe that it will encourage people to recycle more containers, reduce litter, and save municipalities money. On the other hand, opponents of the bill argue that it will create difficulties for retailers, liquor stores, restaurants, and beverage manufacturers. Businesses will have to find extra space for the added bottles and cans, and it will take increased labor and money to change container labeling and set up new systems. This will result in increased prices for consumers.
A statewide poll conducted by the Siena College Research Institute for the New York Public Interest Research Group showed that the majority of those polled favored the expansion of the bill, with 71% in favor of adding new types of beverages to the law and 51% in favor of hiking the deposit fee to 10 cents.
The bill, if passed, would begin phasing in next year. The debate on the “Bigger, Better Bottle Bill” continues, with businesses and consumers having differing opinions on the potential consequences of the bill.
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