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Efforts To Retool California’s Beverage Container Recycling Program Stalled At State Capitol

Larry Crowe / AP

Larry Crowe / AP

A proposal to overhaul California's decades-old Beverage Container Recycling Program has stalled at the state Capitol. 

The program has struggled with deficits, and last year hundreds of recycling centers closed around the state. Part of the proposal that failed a Senate floor vote would’ve ended an exemption for wine and liquor bottles. It would’ve also shifted running the recycling program over to distributors.

But Republican Senator Jim Nielsen wasn’t won over.

“We’re fixing something that isn’t really broken, that can be fixed within with better management,” said Nielsen.

Some in the beverage and container industries also opposed the bill.

Michael Miiller is with the California Association of Winegrape Growers. 

“There’s no doubt the program needs a major overhaul,” he said. 

Miiller argues a consensus could still emerge this year, despite setbacks, in the form of a budget trailer. Saying it’s a complex and multi-sided discussion, Miiller expects that conversation will continue.

Daniel Potter


Daniel Potter started out as an intern at Nashville Public Radio, where he worked as a general assignment reporter for six years, covering everything from tornadoes to the statehouse.   Read Full Bio 

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