Bottle redemption centers plead with lawmakers to save their businesses

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The centers that collect bottles and cans were left disappointed after they pled with members of the State Senate and Assembly to immediately help struggling redemption centers.  

NewsChannel 13 reported in August, hundreds of redemption centers are in danger of closing. They say New York’s bottle bill is in dire need of an upgrade. However, they said they can’t wait until next session. They’re calling for a special legislative session to give them a raise.

At a joint hearing of the Senate and Assembly Committees on Environmental Conservation, Jade Eddy, a redemption center operator from Queensbury, told lawmakers she was having difficulty staying open with the cost of disposing of the cans. The legislature sets how much centers make for each bottle or can handled. The fee has sat at three and a half cents since the 2000s.

Environmental advocates have been calling for an increase in the five-cent deposit fee in the state’s bottle bill, which has not changed since 1982.

Also on Monday, the Department of Environmental Conservation on Monday announced a new statewide multi-agency effort to prevent returnable container schemes that defraud the state of millions of dollars.

Among the agencies involved will be the State Department of Taxation and Finance (DTF), Department of Agriculture and Markets, State Liquor Authority, and others to collect and interpret data, inspect and certifying counting equipment, investigating complaints and preventing or prosecuting fraud.