What Does the Actual Bill Mean?

Alright guys, I just read a 32 page bill draft. It is the most recent attempt at getting the bottle bill passed here in TN and is basically a bunch of jibber jabber of technicalities as to what will happen on every level of business pertaining to this law. (No secrets.)

It was informative, but lacking the actual information I am most curious about – why was it voted against?

The first page of the bill clearly states that, “WHEREAS, the general assembly finds that recycling is an important element of an integrated solid waste management system that can protect and preserve natural resources, conserve energy, and reduce economic costs to residents, businesses, and local governments
within the state; and WHEREAS, the general assembly finds that reducing litter is important for promoting┬átourism and recreation, for reducing costs to businesses, farmers, and governments, and for enhancing the quality of life for all residents of this state.”

How do you vote ‘no’ on something laid out so perfectly?

I did however get some light shed upon my curiosity. The rep that has been helping me through this at the moment, (THANK YOU!!) referenced a childhood memory of taking empty recyclables back to the market for some cents. Two things popped into my head when I read his email.

1. That’s incredible that you have personally experienced some sort of recycling program. I need to find out if this was in TN, or out of state. If it was in TN, what happened?

2. The program that I am used to, and what I am trying to get passed here focuses more on recycling centers, or pods, and less on returning to the place of purchase of said recyclables.

Maybe my ‘thing 2’ is why people have voted against? I know if I worked at a market, probably not making the best salary, I would be livid if the state passed a law that made more work for me, with stagnant pay.

What I am striving for, are a bunch of portable recycling centers that can set up camp anywhere that is applicable. Thus creating more jobs, as well as providing a very accessible recycling “center”. I tried going to a scrap yard when I first moved here and it was slightly depressing – by slightly, I mean extremely. They were very surprised by the fact that I had cans and beer bottles as they were used to scrap metal and giant dumpsters full of recyclable material. Also, the amount I made off my two giant bins was around $3. Depressing.

With these new puzzle pieces of knowledge, I’m hoping to gain answers to more of my questions. I have a real problem with just creating more questions with answers, so fingers crossed I can maybe get some stuff done soon.

I have also contacted the woman that previously spear headed the TN Bottle Bill campaign. I’ll keep you posted on where that takes me. Thanks for reading!