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House paint pilot project vetoed (vetoed bill)

Published (5/29/2009)
By Sue Hegarty
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For the second consecutive year, a product stewardship plan to charge consumers a recycling fee on house paint fell under Gov. Tim Pawlenty’s veto pen.

The pilot project would have allowed participating retailers to charge up to 35 cents on each paint container sold at the point of purchase until June 30, 2012. The revenue would have been used to pay for a statewide recycling program administered by a new nonprofit organization comprised of paint manufacturers and retailers.

In liquid form, paint is considered hazardous waste and may not be thrown away with household trash. Most cities and counties accept leftover paint at local government recycling centers.

In his veto letter, Pawlenty said Minnesotans are already paying about $6 million in taxes a year to cities and counties for paint recycling programs. “I would be willing to consider legislation that creates an industry-managed paint collection and recycling program as long as the program clearly demonstrates taxpayers will not be paying for the same thing twice.”

Sponsored by Rep. Brita Sailer (DFL-Park Rapids) and Sen. John Doll (DFL-Burnsville), the goal of the legislation was to minimize the public’s involvement in managing leftover paint.


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