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Bottle Bill Expansion Effort Fails

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Legislation to expand the bottle bill in Massachusetts won’t make it this year to Governor Patrick’s desk.   WAMC”s Paul Tuthill reports.

   A conference committee stripped the bottle bill from the final version of legislation intended to spur economic development.  James McCaffrey, director of the Massachusetts Sierra Club  said it  was the end of efforts  in this two year legislative session  to expand the bottle.

   Expanding the state’s 5  cent bottle deposit to include water, juices, teas and sports drinks would reduce litter and encourage more recycling according to advocates who have pushed for the expansion for more than a decade.

   Opponents of expanding the bottle deposit law argued it would increase costs  for grocers and bottlers that would in turn be passed onto consumers. 

Paul Tuthill is WAMC’s Pioneer Valley Bureau Chief. He’s been covering news, everything from politics and government corruption to natural disasters and the arts, in western Massachusetts since 2007. Before joining WAMC, Paul was a reporter and anchor at WRKO in Boston. He was news director for more than a decade at WTAG in Worcester. Paul has won more than two dozen Associated Press Broadcast Awards. He won an Edward R. Murrow award for reporting on veterans’ healthcare for WAMC in 2011. Born and raised in western New York, Paul did his first radio reporting while he was a student at the University of Rochester.