Forty years ago, when lawmakers first signed Oregon’s bottle bill – the first in the nation – into law, they couldn’t have predicted the rise of the energy drink or vitamin-infused water.
Lawmakers have said for several sessions the bottle bill was showing signs of age. Today, the governor fixed that by signing an overhaul of the bill into law, which would cover different types of containers, including for some sport drinks and energy drinks.
Rep. Ben Cannon, D-Portland, said the bottle bill is about the culture of Oregon and about who we are as Oregonians.
He also joked that the bottle bill has been called the “holy grail” of politics and perhaps next session, he would go after the beer tax.
Here are highlights of the bottle bill overhaul:
The new bill would expand the deposit to cover more beverage containers.
It will increase the deposit from 5 to 10 cents, if the redemption rate is below 80 percent for two years and no sooner than 2017.
And it creates a pilot project for a large redemption center, larger than what is currently allowed under law.