ASSEMBLY, No. 4379

STATE OF NEW JERSEY

221st LEGISLATURE

 

INTRODUCED MAY 16, 2024

 


 

Sponsored by:

Assemblywoman  JESSICA RAMIREZ

District 32 (Hudson)

Assemblywoman  GARNET R. HALL

District 28 (Essex and Union)

 

 

 

 

SYNOPSIS

     “Beverage Container Deposit Act”; requires use of returnable beverage containers in NJ and establishes deposit and refund system to facilitate return of such containers to manufacturers for reuse or proper disposal.

 

CURRENT VERSION OF TEXT

     As introduced.

  


An Act concerning the establishment of a container deposit and refund system to facilitate the reuse, recycling, and proper disposal of beverage containers sold in the State, supplementing Title 13 of the Revised Statutes, and repealing section 5 of P.L.2007, c.311.

 

     Be It Enacted by the Senate and General Assembly of the State of New Jersey:

 

     1.    This act shall be known, and may be cited as, the “Beverage Container Disposal Act.” 

 

     2.    As used in this act:

     “Account-based bulk processing program” means a beverage container recycling program implemented by a redemption center or pick-up agent that meets the requirements of rules adopted by the department, is approved by the department, consolidates beverage containers subject to the requirements of this chapter through bulk sorting, collects data regarding each container sorted, provides electronic data reports specifying the number of containers sorted by universal product code along with information regarding the container brand, redemption location and container material type to support an accounting of deposits, fees, and material weight and prepares the sorted containers for sale to recyclers. An account-based bulk processing program may include a bag drop program as a program component.

     “Bag drop program" means a beverage container recycling program implemented by a redemption center that meets the requirements of rules adopted by the department and that allows a person to drop off beverage containers subject to the requirements of this chapter in a bag or other receptacle at one or more identified locations and to have the corresponding refund placed into an account to be held for the benefit of the person in a manner that allows the person to obtain the refund or a refund receipt within 10 calendar days following the drop-off.  A bag-drop program may be implemented as part of, or in conjunction with an account-based bulk processing program.

     “Beverage” means any drinkable liquid intended for human oral consumption.  “Beverage” does not include:  a drug regulated under the Federal Food, Drug, and Cosmetic Act (21 U.S.C. 301 et seq.); infant formula; a meal replacement liquid; or dairy products derived from animal milk.

     “Beverage container” or “container” means a prepackaged container, such as a bottle, can, carton, pouch, or aseptic packaging which:  is made of any material or combination of materials, including, but not limited to, glass, plastic, paper, cardboard, or metal; contains a beverage; and has a volume of not more than one gallon.  “Beverage container” or “container” shall not include a beverage cup.

     “Brand” means a word, name, symbol, trademark, group of letters, or any combination thereof, which is adopted and used by a manufacturer to identify a specific flavor or type of beverage, and to distinguish that flavor or type from another beverage being produced or marketed by that manufacturer or by another manufacturer.

     “Certified as reusable” means that a beverage container is officially recognized, by the department, as being reusable in nature.

     “Container deposit” or “deposit” means a $0.10 deposit surcharge, equaling the refund value of a container, which surcharge:  is originated by a distributor on each filled beverage container sold or offered for sale in this State; is paid by the dealer and by the consumer of the beverage, upon sale and delivery of the filled beverage container thereto; and may be refunded to the consumer and the dealer, as appropriate, upon the consumer’s or dealer’s return of the empty beverage container.

     “Container refund” or “refund” means a cash reimbursement of the $0.10 container deposit that was previously paid on a filled beverage container, which is granted to a consumer or dealer, as appropriate, upon the consumer’s or dealer’s return of the empty container.

     “Dealer” means a person who sells, or offers for sale, one or more filled beverage containers directly to consumers in this State.  “Dealer” includes the owner or operator of a vending machine that dispenses filled beverage containers, or any other person, including the owner or lessee of the property upon which a vending machine is located, who accepts deliveries of filled beverage containers to the vending machine.

     “Department” means the Department of Environmental Protection.

     “Designated container” means a beverage container that has a symbol, mark, label, or other distinguishing characteristic that enables a reverse vending machine to determine whether the container is a returnable beverage container for which a refund is warranted.

     “Distributor” means a manufacturer or other person who sells, or offers for sale, one or more filled beverage containers to a dealer in the State.  “Distributor” includes a non-profit organization which a group of distributors has elected to create or appoint, pursuant to section 12 of this act, to fulfill their obligations under the “Beverage Container Deposit Act.”

     “Empty” means that a beverage container contains nothing inside except the residue of its original contents.

     “Filled” means that a beverage container is unopened and contains a beverage.

     “Manufacturer” means a person who bottles, cans, or otherwise places beverages in beverage containers for sale to distributors, dealers, or consumers.

     “Metal beverage container” means a beverage container composed primarily of metal.

     “Off-site consumption” means consumption of a beverage while outside of a sale and consumption area.

     “On-site consumption” means consumption of a beverage while inside of a sale and consumption area.

     “Over-redeemer” means a distributor who, in a single year, expends more money through the issuance of container refunds than the distributor collects in container deposits.

     “Over-redemption credit” means a credit offered by the Department of the Treasury to a distributor who, in a single year, expends more money through the issuance of container refunds than the distributor collects in container deposits.

     “Person” means an individual, partnership, corporation, association, or other legal entity.

     “Previously redeemed beverage container” or “previously redeemed container” means an empty beverage container that a consumer is attempting to return for redemption, but which, at the time of such consumer return, is no longer eligible for a refund of the container’s deposit value because the appropriate refund has already been issued on the container.  “Previously returned container” does not include a beverage container for which a refund of the deposit value has already been issued, in any case where such beverage container was returned to the distributor, following the prior issuance of a refund thereon, and was refilled and returned, by the distributor, to the stream of commerce as a new beverage container prior to the current redemption attempt.

     “Previously rejected beverage container” or “previously rejected container” means a beverage container, whether empty or filled, which a consumer is attempting to return for redemption, but which has previously been rejected for redemption and refused a refund of the container’s deposit value, regardless of the basis for such rejection.

     “Redeem” or “redemption” means the act of returning an empty returnable container to a dealer or distributor for a refund of the $0.10 container deposit previously paid on the filled container.

     “Redeemed empty returnable container” or “redeemed container” means an empty returnable container that has been returned, by both a consumer and a dealer, for a refund, and which is returned to the manufacturer for the purposes of reuse, recycling, or proper disposal in accordance with all applicable laws and regulations.

     “Redemption center” means a facility established pursuant to section 10 of this act, which is approved by the department to engage in the bulk collection of redeemable containers being returned by consumers, for redemption, pursuant to this act.

     “Redemption channel” means a dealer, a redemption center, a bag drop program, or an account-based bulk processing program.

     “Returnable beverage container” or “returnable container” means a beverage container upon which a deposit of at least $0.10 has been originated by a distributor, and for which a cash refund of at least $0.10 is payable, by a dealer or distributor of the beverage in the State, upon the return of the empty container thereto.

     “Reusable beverage container” or “reusable” means that a beverage container, once emptied and redeemed, is capable of being sanitized and refilled by a manufacturer and reinserted into the stream of commerce as a new, filled beverage container.

     “Reuse” means the sanitizing and refilling of an empty redeemed container, and the reinsertion of that sanitized and refilled container back into the stream of commerce as a new, filled beverage container.

     “Reverse vending machine” means an automated device that uses a laser scanner, microprocessor, or other technology to accurately recognize the universal product code on containers to determine whether a container is redeemable, and which accumulates information regarding the containers redeemed, including the number of such redeemed containers, thereby enabling the device to:  accept containers from redeemers; issue a receipt for the refund value thereof; transmit data for reconciliation purposes; sort and compact redeemed containers; and cancel a redemption transaction upon request of the redeemer.

     “Sale and consumption area” means the premises within the property of a dealer, or within the property of a dealer’s lessor, where the sale of a filled, returnable beverage container is made, and within which, if authorized by the dealer, a consumer may drink the beverage without paying a container deposit.

     “Unclaimed container deposit” or “unclaimed deposit” means a $0.10 container deposit collected by a distributor, which deposit has not yet been refunded to a dealer.

     “Under-redeemer” means a distributor who, in a single year, collects more money in container deposits than the distributor expends through the issuance of container refunds. 

 

     3.    a.  Every filled beverage container sold or offered for sale in this State:

     (1)   shall be a returnable container;

     (2)   shall have a refund value of $0.10 when empty;

     (3)   shall be clearly identified by a stamp, label, or other mark securely affixed to the beverage container, bearing the inscription “New Jersey” or “N.J.,” and indicating the refund value of the beverage container; and

     (4)   if a metal beverage container, shall not have any part that becomes detached from the container when opened.

     b.    Commencing on the effective date of this act, a manufacturer shall not manufacture for sale in this State, a distributor shall not sell, offer for sale, or give to a dealer in this State, and a dealer shall not sell, offer for sale, or give to a consumer in this State, any filled beverage container that fails to comply with the provisions of subsection a. of this section.

     c.     (1) In addition to any other penalties provided by law, a person who violates the provisions of subsection b. of this section shall be subject to the payment of a civil penalty of not less than $100 and not more than $1,000 and restitution in an amount to that is equal to the loss resulting from the violation, as determined and ordered by the court.

     (2)   Penalties and restitution payments authorized pursuant to this subsection shall be collected, by the department, in a summary proceeding commenced thereby pursuant to the “Penalty Enforcement Law of 1999,” P.L.1999, c.274 (C.2A:58-10 et seq.).  The Superior Court and municipal court shall have jurisdiction to enforce the “Penalty Enforcement Law of 1999” for the purposes of this subsection.

     d.    Any penalty amounts imposed and collected pursuant to this section shall be payable to the State and credited to the Clean-Up and Redevelopment Trust Fund, established pursuant to section 15 of this act.

 

     4.    a.  A distributor who sells a filled beverage container to a dealer in this State shall originate a $0.10 refundable container deposit surcharge on that container, which deposit shall be paid by the dealer, upon the sale and delivery of the container thereto, and collected by the distributor.  The distributor shall maintain a record of all container deposits collected pursuant to this paragraph.

     b.    (1)  A dealer who sells a filled returnable beverage container to a consumer in this State, for the purposes of off-site consumption, shall require the consumer, at the time of sale, to pay the dealer the $0.10 container deposit originated on the container pursuant to subsection a. of this section.

     (2)   A dealer who sells a filled returnable beverage container to a consumer in this State, for the purposes of on-site consumption, may either:  (a) require the consumer, at the time of sale, to pay the $0.10 container deposit originated on the container pursuant to subsection a. of this section; or (b) authorize the consumer to consume the beverage on-site, within the sale and consumption area, without paying the $0.10 container deposit.  If the dealer authorizes on-site consumption of the beverage without requiring payment of a deposit at the time of sale, the dealer shall require the consumer of the beverage to return the empty container to the dealer before leaving the sale and consumption area or, if the container is not so returned, to pay the requisite $0.10 container deposit upon leaving the sale and consumption area with the container.

     c.     (1)  A distributor or dealer who fails to originate or impose a container deposit surcharge on a returnable container, in violation of the provisions of subsection a. or b. of this section, as appropriate, shall be subject to the payment of a civil penalty of not less than $100 and not more than $1,000 and restitution in an amount that is equal to the loss resulting from the violation, as determined and ordered by the court.  Each day on which a violation continues, pursuant to this section, shall constitute a separate and distinct offense. 

     (2)   Penalties and restitution payments authorized pursuant to this subsection shall be collected, by the department, in a summary proceeding commenced thereby pursuant to the “Penalty Enforcement Law of 1999,” P.L.1999, c.274 (C.2A:58-10 et seq.).  The Superior Court and municipal court shall have jurisdiction to enforce the “Penalty Enforcement Law of 1999” for the purposes of this subsection.

     d.    Any penalty amounts imposed or restitution payments ordered pursuant to this section shall be payable to the State and credited to the Clean-Up and Redevelopment Trust Fund, established pursuant to section 15 of this act.

 

     5.    a.  No person shall pay, claim, or receive any container deposit, processing payment, or handling fee for any of the following:

     (1)   a beverage container that the person knew, or should have known, was imported from out of State;

     (2)   a previously redeemed beverage container;

     (3)   a previously rejected beverage container; or

     (4)   any other vessel, cup, non-beverage container, or other material that is ineligible for redemption pursuant to this act.

     b.    No person shall, within intent to defraud, do any of the following:

     (1)   redeem or attempt to redeem an out-of-state container, a previously redeemed container, a previously rejected container, or any other ineligible container or material;

     (2)   return a previously redeemed container to the marketplace for redemption purposes;

     (3)   bring an out-of-state container, a previously rejected container, or any other ineligible container or material to the marketplace for redemption purposes; or

     (4)   receive, store, transport, distribute, or otherwise facilitate or aid in the redemption of an out-of-state container, a previously redeemed container, a previously rejected container, or other ineligible material.

     c.     The department, and each dealer or distributor participating in the beverage container deposit system established pursuant to this act, shall take all reasonable steps to exclude from the container deposit system, and to prevent the redemption of, all out-of-State beverage containers and all previously redeemed beverage containers, previously rejected beverage containers, and other ineligible containers and materials, as necessary to effectuate the provisions and purposes of subsection a. of this section.

     d.    Any person who violates the provisions of this section shall be subject to the payment of restitution in an amount equal to the loss resulting from the violation, as determined and ordered by the court in a summary proceeding pursuant to the “Penalty Enforcement Law of 1999,” P.L.1999, c.274 (C.2A:58-10 et seq.).  The Superior Court and municipal court shall have jurisdiction to enforce the “Penalty Enforcement Law of 1999” for the purposes of this subsection.

     e.     Any restitution payments ordered, by the court, pursuant to this section shall be payable to the State and credited to the Clean-Up and Redevelopment Trust Fund, established pursuant to section 15 of this act.

 

     6.    a.  (1) Except as otherwise provided by this section, a dealer shall accept for return, from any person, an empty returnable container of any kind, size, and brand that is sold or offered for sale by the dealer.  Upon the dealer’s receipt of such empty returnable container, the dealer shall pay the full refund value of the container, in cash, to the person returning the empty container, regardless of whether such person is the original customer who purchased the filled container or whether the filled beverage container was originally sold by the dealer.  A dealer shall be authorized, but shall not be required, to limit, to $25 per day, the total dollar amount of refunds that may be daily issued by the dealer to a single person under this paragraph. 

     (2)   The use or presence of a reverse vending machine shall not relieve a dealer of any obligation imposed thereon pursuant to this act.  If a dealer uses a reverse vending machine to redeem containers for the purposes of this act, the dealer shall also provide for the manual redemption of beverage containers whenever such reverse vending machine is full, is broken, is under repair, or does not accept a type of beverage container being sold or offered for sale by such dealer, upon redemption thereof.

     (3)   A distributor shall accept for return, from any dealer, an empty returnable container of any kind, size, and brand that is sold or offered for sale by the distributor, and shall pay to the dealer the full refund value of the container, in cash.  Upon receipt of a redeemed empty returnable container, pursuant to this paragraph, the distributor shall return the redeemed container to the manufacturer or, if the distributor is the manufacturer of the container, shall retain possession of the container, for the purposes specified in paragraph (4) of this subsection.  The distributor shall maintain a record of all container refunds that are issued pursuant to this paragraph.

     (4)   Upon a manufacturer’s receipt of an empty redeemed container, the manufacturer shall reuse, recycle, or otherwise properly dispose of the container in accordance with this act and all other applicable laws and regulations.

     b.    A consumer shall be authorized to return for a refund, and a distributor or dealer shall be authorized to accept for return, and to issue a refund on, an empty container, in accordance with this section, only if the empty container was originally sold in this State as a filled returnable container, as indicated by a mark affixed to the container pursuant to paragraph (3) of subsection a. of section 3 of this act.  A consumer or dealer shall not return or attempt to return for a refund, and a distributor or dealer shall not accept for redemption and issue a refund on, any beverage container that the person knows, or should know, was not purchased in this State as a filled returnable beverage container.

     c.     Notwithstanding the provisions of this section to the contrary:

     (1)   if a dealer authorizes a consumer to engage in on-site consumption of a beverage in a returnable container without paying a container deposit, as provided by paragraph (2) of subsection b. of section 4 of this act, and the consumer returns the container to the dealer before leaving the sale and consumption area, the dealer shall not be required to pay the consumer a refund upon the consumer’s return, and the dealer’s acceptance, of the empty container; and

     (2)   a distributor or dealer shall not issue more than one refund on the same empty returnable container following a single use; however, nothing in this paragraph shall prohibit a distributor or dealer from issuing more than one refund on the same empty returnable container if the returnable container is a reusable container for which a refund was previously issued and, in the time since the issuance of the prior refund, the reusable container has been sanitized and refilled by the manufacturer, returned to the stream of commerce for sale as a new, filled beverage container, and newly emptied by another consumer.

     d.    In addition to any other penalties provided by law, a consumer or dealer who returns or attempts to return for a refund, and a dealer or distributor who accepts for redemption, an out-of-State or non-returnable container, in violation of the provisions of subsection b. of this section, shall be subject to the payment of restitution in an amount equal to the loss resulting from the violation, as determined and ordered by the court in a summary proceeding pursuant to the “Penalty Enforcement Law of 1999,” P.L.1999, c.274 (C.2A:58-10 et seq.).  The Superior Court and municipal court shall have jurisdiction to enforce the “Penalty Enforcement Law of 1999” for the purposes of this subsection.

     e.     Any restitution payments ordered, by the court, pursuant to this section shall be payable to the State and credited to the Clean-Up and Redevelopment Trust Fund, established pursuant to section 15 of this act.

 

     7.    a.  (1) Each dealer who sells filled returnable beverage containers for off-site consumption shall provide, on the premises where such sales are made, or within 100 yards thereof, a reverse vending machine or other convenient means by which empty returnable containers of any kind, size, and brand sold or offered for sale by the dealer may be returned by, and the refund value of the container refunded in cash to, the person who is returning the empty container, regardless of whether such person is the original customer who purchased the filled container or whether the container was originally sold by the dealer.

     (2)  A dealer shall post, in that portion of the dealer’s premises where returnable containers are redeemed, a written notice stating the following:  “A person who returns out-of-State or nonreturnable beverage containers for a refund may be subject to the payment of restitution.”

     b.    A dealer who violates the provisions of subsection a. of this section shall be subject to a civil penalty of not more than $50 for each offense, to be collected in a summary proceeding pursuant to the “Penalty Enforcement Law of 1999,” P.L.1999, c.274 (C.2A:58-10 et seq.).  Each day on which a violation continues shall constitute a separate and distinct offense.  The Superior Court and municipal court shall have the jurisdiction to enforce the provisions of the “Penalty Enforcement Law of 1999” in connection with this section.

     c.     (1) In order to facilitate the consumer use of reverse vending machines for the purposes of this act, each manufacturer, to the greatest extent practicable, shall use returnable containers that have a designated symbol, mark, or other distinguishing characteristic sufficient to enable a reverse vending machine to determine whether the container is a returnable container necessitating a refund.

     (2)   Any symbol, mark, or other distinguishing characteristic placed on a designated container, pursuant to this subsection, shall be approved by the department, and shall be unique to this State or authorized for use only in this State and in one or more other states having laws substantially similar to this act.

     d.    (1)  Commencing 90 days after the effective date of this act, a manufacturer shall not sell, offer for sale, or give to a distributor, dealer, or consumer in this State, a beverage container that is not a designated container, if the Department of the Treasury determines that:

     (a)   at least 500,000 cases or case-equivalents of that brand of beverage, in that type of container, were sold in this State in the preceding calendar year; or

     (b)   less than 500,000 cases or case-equivalents of that brand of beverage, in that type of container, were sold in this State in the preceding calendar year, but more than 600,000 cases or case-equivalents of that brand of beverage, in that type of container, were redeemed for container refunds in the preceding calendar year.

     (2)   A manufacturer who violates the provisions of this subsection shall be subject to a civil penalty of not more than $2,000.

     e.     Any penalty amounts imposed and collected pursuant to this section shall be payable to the State and credited to the Clean-Up and Redevelopment Trust Fund, established pursuant to section 15 of this act.

 

     8.    a.  In order to promote the use, in this State, of reusable beverage containers of uniform design, and in order to facilitate the return of such containers to manufacturers for reuse as new, filled beverage containers, the department, in consultation with the Division of Alcoholic Beverage Control in the Department of Law and Public Safety, shall certify beverage containers as reusable, in accordance with subsection b. of this section, either upon application of the manufacturer, as provided by subsection c. of this section, or based upon the department’s own independent determinations.

     b.    (1)  A beverage container of any type or composition shall be certified as reusable if the department determines both that that type of beverage container satisfies the requirements of section 3 of this act and that more than one manufacturer has the capacity, in the ordinary course of business, to accept, sanitize, and refill that type of beverage container, for reinsertion into the stream of commerce as a new, filled beverage container, after it has been emptied and returned to the manufacturer in accordance with this act.

     (2)   A beverage container shall not be certified as reusable if the department determines that:

     (a)   by reason of its shape or design, or by reason of words or symbols embossed, engraved, painted, or otherwise permanently inscribed thereon, the container is reusable as a beverage container only by a single manufacturer of a beverage sold under a specific brand name; or

     (b)   the type of beverage container is available for reuse by multiple manufacturers, but the reuse of that type of beverage container by more than one manufacturer will not occur at sufficient volume to fully effectuate the purposes set forth in subsection a. of this section.

     c.     A manufacturer may submit a written application to the department seeking to have a specific beverage container, used by the manufacturer, certified as reusable.  Unless such application is rejected by the department within 60 days after the date on which it is filed, the application shall be deemed approved, and the beverage container identified in the application shall be deemed to have been certified as reusable.

     d.    (1)  Each beverage container certified as reusable, pursuant to this section, shall be capable of holding a minimum of three liquid ounces.  The department shall establish, by rule or regulation, appropriate size classifications for the beverage containers being certified under this section, and shall not certify more than one beverage container of any one particular manufacturer in each size classification.

     (2)   The department may require that any beverage container certified as reusable, pursuant to this section, be clearly identified as such by a stamp, label, or other mark securely affixed to the beverage container.  The department may require that such demarcation be separate from, or included as a part of, the label or other mark that is required to be affixed to the container pursuant to paragraph (3) of subsection a. of section 3 of this act.

     e.     The department may, at any time, review a certification previously granted pursuant to this section.  If, upon review, and after providing written notice and affording a hearing to the person, if any, who filed the original application for certification, the department determines that the beverage container is no longer qualified for certification, it shall withdraw the certification.  Withdrawal of certification shall become effective on the date specified by the department, but not less than 30 days after written notice of the decertification has been provided both to the person who filed the original application for certification, if any, and to any other manufacturer who accepts the beverage container for refilling and reuse in the ordinary course of business.

     f.     The department shall publish and regularly update, on its Internet website, a list of the types of containers that are certified as reusable pursuant to this section.

 

     9.    a.  A distributor who, in a single year, collects more money in container deposits than the distributor expends in container refunds shall pay to the Department of the Treasury, in accordance with a schedule adopted by the State Treasurer, the value of the unclaimed deposits, less the value of any over-redemption credit authorized pursuant to subsection b. of this section.

     b.    (1)  An under-redeemer who makes a payment pursuant to subsection a. of this section, and who becomes an over-redeemer in a subsequent year, may obtain a credit for the value of the over-redemption occurring in that year in order to reduce the amount of money owed to the Department of the Treasury, pursuant to this section, in one or more subsequent years as a result of that person again becoming an under-redeemer.  Any such over-redemption credit, once obtained and until depleted, may be carried forward for a period of not more than three years.

     (2)   Notwithstanding the provisions of this subsection to the contrary, an over-redeemer who is not planning to continue to originate container deposits in subsequent years, pursuant to subsection a. of section 4 of this act, shall be authorized by the Department of the Treasury, on a one-time basis, to carry the value of an over-redemption credit back into prior years in order to realize the value of the credit.

     c.     The Department of the Treasury shall be authorized to audit, assess, and collect the amount of money reflecting unclaimed container deposits, as provided by this section, and to take any other appropriate action to enforce the requirements of this section.

     d.    (1)  In order to reduce the costs that are owed by an under-redeemer under subsection a. of this section, and in order to reduce the total amount of funds expended by an over-redeemer for excess refunds issued under this act, an under-redeemer shall be authorized to purchase empty redeemed containers from another distributor who is an over-redeemer in the same year.  The consideration paid by an under-redeemer to an over-redeemer for each empty redeemed container shall equal the refund value of the container.

     (2)   For the purposes of reporting pursuant to subsection e. of this section, purchases made by an under-redeemer pursuant to this subsection shall be reported as container refunds, and sales made by an over-redeemer pursuant to this subsection shall be reported as container deposits. 

     e.     Not later than one year after the effective date of this act, and annually thereafter, a distributor who originates container deposits pursuant to subsection a. of section 4 of this act shall submit, to the Department of the Treasury, a written report identifying:

     (1)   the total value of container deposits that were collected by the distributor during the year, including, as appropriate, the value of container deposits collected through the sale of unredeemed containers to an under-redeemer, pursuant to subsection d. of this section, and the name and address of each under-redeemer to whom such sales were made;

     (2)   the total value of container refunds that were issued by the distributor during the year, including, as appropriate, the value of container refunds made through the purchase of unredeemed containers from an over-redeemer, pursuant to subsection d. of this section, and the name and address of each over-redeemer from whom such purchases were made;

     (3)   the difference between the total value of container deposits collected, as reported under paragraph (1) of this subsection, and the total value of container refunds issued, as reported under paragraph (2) of this subsection;

     (4)   the value of any over-redemption credit previously granted to the distributor pursuant to subsection b. of this section, and the date on which the over-redemption credit was granted; and

     (5)   the total amount owed to the Department of the Treasury, pursuant to subsection a. of this section.

     f.     Notwithstanding the payments required and credits authorized pursuant to this section, an unclaimed deposit on a returnable container shall be deemed to be the property of the person who returns the empty container for redemption.  Unclaimed deposits shall not be deemed to be the property of the distributor or the manufacturer, and a distributor shall continue to refund unclaimed deposit amounts to each person who redeems an empty returnable container, regardless of any under-redemption payments that are made by the distributor, or any over-redemption credits that are provided to the distributor, pursuant to this section.

 

     10.  a.  The Department shall authorize and provide for the establishment, licensure, and operation of beverage container redemption centers in the State, for the purposes of this act.

     b.    A beverage container redemption center shall be authorized to collect redeemable containers via an account-based bulk processing program, a bag-drop program, or both.

     c.     Each redemption center established and licensed pursuant to this section shall:

     (1)   accept all redeemable containers for redemption;

     (2)   ensure that reusable containers are handled, at the redemption center, in a manner that allows for their reuse;

     (3)   be clean, safe, and well lit;

     (4)   be stationed inside of a building or other closed shelter, including a stand, but not including a tent or other type of shelter made of textile material;

     (5)   contain sufficient space, in an area not visible to redeemers or other clientele, for the storage of redeemed containers; and provide for and ensure the prompt and continued storage of redeemed containers collected by the redemption center, pending their transport to another facility in accordance with the provisions of this act;

     (6)   be accessible, by road, on a year-round basis;

     (7)   be accessible to persons with reduced mobility;

     (8)   be clearly marked with signage bearing the redemption center’s name or logo, which signage shall be installed in a prominent position on the facade of, or near to, the site at which redeemable containers may be deposited, by redeemers, for a refund;

     (9)   be clearly marked and readily identifiable as a licensed partner in the State’s container deposit and refund system, operated pursuant to this act;

     (10)  if the redemption center is associated with more than one retail establishment, be clearly marked, and readily identifiable, as being associated with each such establishment; and

     (11)  accept redeemable containers for redemption, pursuant to this act, on the days, and during the hours, required by subsection d. of this section, and display the redemption center’s days and hours of operation in a location that is clearly visible from the outside of the redemption center;

     (12)  refund the deposit value of redeemable containers returned to the redemption center, either by providing the redeemer with legal tender or by providing the redeemer with a receipt or script dispensed from a reverse vending machine, which receipt or script may then be exchanged, by the redeemer, for legal tender, over a period of not less than 60 days following the date of the issuance of the receipt or script thereto; and

     (13)  in any case where the redemption center uses an electronic process to facilitate the refund of deposit values on redeemed containers, ensure that such electronic process is secure and is completed not more than seven days after the redemption center receives the redeemable containers for which a refund is authorized.

     d.    (1)  Except as otherwise provided by paragraph (2) of this subsection, a redemption center established and operating in this State shall remain open and available to accept redeemable containers, for redemption purposes, on a daily basis, seven days a week, for at least 10 hours a day from Monday through Saturday, and for at least six hours a day on Sunday.

     (2)   Notwithstanding the provisions of paragraph (1) of this subsection to the contrary:

     (a)   Whenever a redemption center is established and operated, by a single retailer, either inside or outside of a retail establishment operated thereby, the redemption center shall remain open and available to accept redeemable containers, for the purposes of this act, during the same business hours as are applicable to the retail establishment with which it is associated; and

     (b)  Whenever a redemption center is collectively established and operated, by a group of retailers, outside of more than one retail establishment operated thereby, and all of such retail establishments have business hours shorter than the hours of operation required by paragraph (1) of this subsection, the redemption center shall remain open and available to accept redeemable containers, for the purposes of this act, during the same business hours as are applicable to the retail establishment, associated therewith, which has the longest hours of operation.

     e.     The network of redemption centers established and operated, pursuant to this section, shall supplement, but shall not supplant, the return of beverage containers to dealers as authorized by section 6 of this act.

     f.     A redemption center may refuse to accept, from a redeemer, any empty beverage container that is broken, is not clean, or contains material that is foreign to the normal contents of the container.

 

     11.  a.  A distributor, unless otherwise specified in a contract executed with a dealer, shall offer to provide, to each dealer or other establishment that allows for the on-site consumption of beverages, a collection service for redeemable containers.  Such collection service shall provide for the distributor to facilitate the regular collection of all redeemable containers stored by such dealers and other establishments, in accordance with the following collection schedule:

     (1)   if the dealer or other establishment has an on-site consumption capacity of 50 or more persons at a time, the collection system shall provide for all redeemable containers stored by such dealer or other establishment to be collected, by the distributor, at least once per week; and

     (2)   if the dealer or other establishment has an on-site consumption capacity of fewer than 50 persons at a time, the collection system shall provide for all redeemable containers stored by such dealer or other establishment to be collected, by the distributor, at least twice per month.

     b.    A distributor operating a collection system, pursuant to this section, shall provide all of the equipment and accessories, including, but not limited to, compactors, bins, crates, or other types of receptacles, which are needed to facilitate the collection of redeemable containers under the system, and shall take appropriate and necessary steps to ensure that redeemable beverage containers are fully emptied and sorted on site, if possible.

     c.     (1) Not more than seven consecutive business days after a distributor collects redeemable containers from a dealer or other establishment, pursuant to this section, the distributor shall refund, to such dealer or other establishment, the deposit value of those redeemed containers.

     (2)   In any case where a distributor requires the use of a digital application to facilitate the issuance of a refund pursuant to this subsection, the distributor shall assign a unique identification code to each dealer or other establishment from which redeemable containers are collected under the distributor’s collection system, and shall require each such dealer or other establishment to attach, to each redeemable container received and stored thereby, a label containing that identification code.  The distributor shall provide each such dealer or other establishment with a sufficient quantity of pre-coded labels, or with a device that can be used by the dealer or other establishment to print its own labels, for the purposes of this paragraph.

     d.    A distributor shall provide, to each dealer or other establishment in the State which allows for the on-site consumption of beverages, a fact sheet or other guidance document describing the parameters of the distributor’s collection service, including, but not limited to:

     (1)   the frequency at which redeemed containers are, or will be, collected from relevant dealers and other establishments electing to participate in the collection service;

     (2)   the types of redeemable beverage containers targeted for collection by the distributor; and

     (3)   any rules that are to be observed or requirements that are to be satisfied, by dealers and other relevant establishments, as a condition of their participation in the collection service.

 

     12.  a.  A group of distributors may elect to create or appoint a nonprofit organization to fulfill the distributors’ duties and responsibilities under this act.

     b.    A consumer shall be authorized to return a redeemable container, for the purposes of redemption pursuant to this act, through the use of any authorized redemption channel.

 

     13.  a.  The Beverage Container Deposit Fund is established as a non-lapsing revolving fund within the Department of the Treasury.  The State Treasurer shall credit, to the fund, any amounts that are paid by under-redeemers, pursuant to section 9 of this act; any other money or assets that are made available, by any State, federal, or private source, for the fund’s purposes; and any interest or earnings achieved from the investment of existing moneys in the fund. 

     b.    Moneys in the Beverage Container Deposit Fund shall be annually disbursed as follows:

     (1)   except as otherwise provided by subsection c. of section 14 of this act, the first $1,000,000 in the fund shall be disbursed to the Beverage Container Deposit Enforcement Fund established pursuant to section 14 of this act; and

     (2)   of the amounts remaining in the fund:  (a) 75 percent shall be disbursed to the Clean-Up and Redevelopment Trust Fund established pursuant to section 15 of this act; and (b) 25 percent shall be apportioned to each dealer in the State, as determined by the Department of the Treasury, based on the number of empty returnable containers handled annually by each dealer.

    

     14.  a.  The Beverage Container Deposit Enforcement Fund is established as a non-lapsing revolving fund in the Department of the Treasury.  The State Treasurer shall credit, to the fund, any amounts that are disbursed thereto, pursuant to paragraph (1) of subsection b. of section 13 of this act; any other money or assets that are made available, by any State, federal, or private source, for the fund’s purposes; and any interest or earnings achieved from the investment of existing moneys in the fund.

     b.    Moneys in the Beverage Container Deposit Enforcement Fund shall be annually disbursed to the Division of State Police in the Department of Law and Public Safety, for use in enforcing the provisions of this act and investigating violations thereof.

     c.     If the balance remaining in the Beverage Container Deposit Enforcement Fund, at the end of a fiscal year, is greater than $3,000,000, disbursements to the fund, as required by paragraph (1) of subsection b. of section 13 of this act, shall be suspended until the balance in the fund falls below $2,000,000.

     d.    Three years after the effective date of this act, and triennially thereafter, the Division of State Police in the Department of Law and Public Safety shall submit a written report to the Legislature, pursuant to section 2 of P.L.1991, c.164 (C.52:14-19.1), evaluating the efficacy of law enforcement efforts that have been undertaken pursuant to this act.  Each such report shall: 

     (1)   identify the number of beverage containers seized in the State in each year, pursuant to this act, and the total refund value of those containers;

     (2)   identify any significant problems in law enforcement efforts undertaken pursuant to this act, describe the efforts that have been undertaken by the division to address those problems, and provide recommendations for legislative or other actions that may be necessary to facilitate ongoing, effective law enforcement in this area; and

     (3)   include any other information that is deemed, by the Superintendent of State Police, to be relevant to the evaluation of law enforcement efficacy in the implementation of this act.

    

     15.  a.  The Clean-Up and Redevelopment Trust Fund is established in the Department of the Treasury.  The State Treasurer shall credit, to the fund, any amounts that are disbursed thereto, pursuant to paragraph (2) of subsection b. of section 13 of this act; any penalty or restitution amounts that are collected for violations of this act; any other money or assets that are made available, by any State, federal, or private source, for the trust fund’s purposes; and any interest or earnings achieved from the investment of existing moneys in the trust fund. 

     b.    Moneys in the trust fund shall be annually disbursed as follows:

     (1)   for each of the first three fiscal years next following the effective date of this act:  (a) the first $15,000,000 in the fund shall be annually disbursed, in equal amounts, to the New Jersey Redevelopment Investment Fund established pursuant to section 27 of P.L.1996, c.62 (C.55:19-46), the Hazardous Discharge Site Remediation Fund established pursuant to section 26 of P.L.1993, c.139 (C.58:10B-4), the Brownfield Site Reimbursement Fund established pursuant to section 38 of P.L.1997, c.278 (C.58:10B-30), the Municipal Landfill Closure and Remediation Fund established by section 6 of P.L.1996, c.124 (C.13:1E-116.6), the New Jersey Spill Compensation Fund established pursuant to section 10 of P.L.1976, c.141 (C.58:10-23.11i), the Clean Water Enforcement Fund established pursuant to section 12 of P.L.1990, c.28 (C.58:10A-14.4); the Pollution Prevention Fund established pursuant to section 16 of P.L.1991, c.235 (C.13:1D-50), and the “Clean Stormwater and Flood Reduction Fund” established by section 17 of P.L.2019, c.42 (C.40A:26B-17); (b) 80 percent of the moneys annually remaining in the fund, following the disbursements made pursuant to subparagraph (a) of this paragraph, shall be disbursed, in equal amounts, to each of the funds identified in subparagraph (a) of this paragraph; and (c) 10 percent of the moneys annually remaining in the fund, following the disbursements made pursuant to subparagraph (a) of this paragraph, shall be disbursed to the Community Pollution Prevention Grant Fund established pursuant to section 16 of this act; and

     (2)   for the fourth, and each subsequent, fiscal year following the effective date of this act:  (a) 80 percent of the moneys in the fund shall be disbursed, in equal amounts, to each of the funds identified in subparagraph (a) of paragraph (1) of this subsection; and (b) 10 percent of the moneys in the fund shall be disbursed to the Community Pollution Prevention Grant Fund established pursuant to section 16 of this act.

     c.     Any moneys remaining in the trust fund at the close of a fiscal year shall remain in the trust fund and shall not lapse into the General Fund unless the trust fund reaches a total accumulated principal of $200,000,000.  At such time, moneys in excess of $200,000,000 in the trust fund, including any new interest and earnings on moneys in the trust fund, shall lapse into the General Fund.

 

     16.  a.  The Community Pollution Prevention Grant Fund is established as a non-lapsing, revolving fund within the Department of Environmental Protection.  The fund shall be credited with any amounts that are disbursed thereto, pursuant to subsection b. of section 15 of this act; any other money or assets that are made available, by any State, federal, or private source, for the fund’s purposes; and any interest or earnings achieved from the investment of existing moneys in the fund. 

     b.    Moneys in the Community Pollution Prevention Grant Fund shall be used by the department only for the purposes of providing grants to eligible entities for the pollution prevention programs and activities identified in subsection c. of this section.  Not more than $100,000 in grants shall be awarded from the fund, in any year, to a single recipient.

     c.     Municipal and county governments, local health departments, regional planning agencies, and other similar entities shall be eligible to receive a grant from the Community Pollution Prevention Grant Fund in order to finance the following programs and activities:

     (1)   programs and activities related to the protection of groundwater or drinking water supplies, including activities related to the delineation of drinking water wellhead protection areas and the implementation of drinking water protection plans;

     (2)   the inspection of facilities that engage in the storage or handling of hazardous waste or other substances that may pose a risk to groundwater or drinking water supplies, or the review of pollution prevention plans prepared by such facilities;

     (3)   programs and activities related to the identification and plugging of abandoned wells other than oil and gas wells;

     (4)   programs and activities that are designed to prevent or clean-up litter; or

     (5)   programs and activities that are designed to educate the general public or businesses, including businesses that use, store, or handle hazardous waste or materials, about various pollution prevention methods, technologies, and processes, and about the importance of directly reducing toxic material discharges and ensuring the use of proper waste disposal methods.

     d.    Each recipient of a grant under this subsection shall provide a financial match that equals not less than 25 percent nor more than 50 percent of the total grant amount awarded pursuant to this subsection. 

     e.     The department shall enter into a written contract with each recipient of a grant under this section, which contract shall identify the programs or activities to be conducted by the grant recipient, the objectives of those programs or activities, the financial match being provided by the grant recipient pursuant to subsection d. of this section, and any deliverables or reports required by the department as a condition of the grant award.

     f.     One year following the commencement of the grant program under this section, and annually thereafter, the department shall prepare and submit, to the Governor and, pursuant to section 2 of P.L.1991, c.164 (C.52:14-19.1), to the Legislature, a written report that: 

     (1)   identifies the amount of each grant award made pursuant to this section and the name of each grant award recipient;

     (2)   summarizes the contractual commitments made pursuant to this section and the extent to which those commitments have been satisfied; and

     (3)   evaluates the effectiveness of the grant program established pursuant to this section and provides recommendations for the program’s improvement and expansion.

 

     17.  The Commissioner of Environmental Protection and the State Treasurer shall each adopt rules and regulations, pursuant to the “Administrative Procedure Act,” P.L.1968, c.410 (C.52:14B-1 et seq.), as may be necessary to implement the provisions of this act.

 

     18.  Section 5 of P.L.2007, c.311 (C.13:1E-96.6) is repealed.

     19.  This act shall take effect two years after the date of enactment, except that the Department of Environmental Protection and the Department of the Treasury shall be authorized to take anticipatory administrative action, in advance of the effective date, as may be necessary to implement the provisions of this act.

 

 

STATEMENT

 

     This bill, to be known as the “Beverage Container Deposit Act,” would establish a container deposit and refund system in New Jersey to facilitate the return of used and empty beverage containers to manufacturers for reuse, recycling, or proper disposal.

     Commencing two years after the date of the bill’s enactment, every filled beverage container sold or offered for sale in the State would need to:  (1) be a returnable container; (2) have a refund value of $0.10 when empty; (3) be clearly identified by a stamp, label, or other mark securely affixed to the container, bearing the name of the State, and indicating the container’s refund value; and (4) if composed primarily of metal, have no part that becomes detached when opened.  Any manufacturer who manufactures for sale in this State, any distributor who sells, offers for sale, or gives to a dealer in the State, and any dealer who sells, offers for sale, or gives to a consumer in this State, a filled beverage container that fails to comply with these requirements will be subject to a civil penalty of $100 to $1,000, for each day of violation, as well as the payment of restitution in an amount equal to the loss resulting from the violation.

     Under the container deposit and refund system established in the bill, a distributor (including a manufacturer or other person) who sells a filled beverage container to a dealer in the State will be required to originate a $0.10 refundable container deposit surcharge on that container, which is to be paid by the dealer and collected and recorded by the distributor.  A dealer who sells a filled beverage container to a consumer will then be required to charge the consumer the $0.10 deposit that was originated by the distributor on the container.  The bill would not require a dealer to collect a deposit from a consumer who is purchasing the beverage for on-site consumption in the dealer’s sale and consumption area; however, if a dealer elects to authorize on-site beverage consumption without payment of a deposit, the dealer will nonetheless be required to collect a deposit if the consumer fails to return the container upon leaving the sale and consumption area.

     A distributor or dealer who fails to originate or impose the $0.10 deposit on a beverage container, as required by the bill, will be subject to a civil penalty of $100 to $1,000, for each day of violation, as well as the payment of restitution in an amount equal to the loss resulting from the violation.

     The bill would require a dealer to accept for return, from any person, an empty returnable container of any kind, size, and brand that is sold or offered for sale by the dealer, and to pay the container’s refund value, in cash, to the person returning the container, regardless of whether that person is the original customer who purchased the filled container or whether the filled container was originally sold by the dealer.  A dealer may limit, to $25, the total dollar amount of container refunds that may be daily issued to a single person. 

     A distributor would similarly be required to accept for return, from any dealer, an empty returnable container of any kind, size, and brand that is sold or offered for sale by the distributor, and to pay the dealer the full refund value of the container, in cash.  The distributor would then be required to either return the redeemed empty container to the manufacturer or, if the distributor is the manufacturer, to retain possession of the redeemed container, for reuse, recycling, or proper disposal in accordance with all applicable laws and regulations.

     The bill would prohibit any person from paying, claiming, or receiving any container deposit, refund, processing payment, or handling fee for any of the following:  (1) a beverage container that the person knows, or should know, was imported from out of State; (2) a previously redeemed beverage container; (3) a previously rejected beverage container; or (4) any other vessel, cup, non-beverage container, or other material that is ineligible for redemption pursuant to this act.  The bill would further prohibit any person from fraudulently:  (1) redeeming or attempting to redeem an out-of-state container, a previously redeemed container, a previously rejected container, or any other ineligible container or material; (2) returning a previously redeemed container to the marketplace for redemption purposes; (3) bringing an out-of-state container, a previously rejected container, or any other ineligible container or material to the marketplace for redemption purposes; or (4) receiving, storing, transporting, distributing, or otherwise facilitating or aiding in the redemption of any such ineligible container or material.  Any person who violates these provisions would be subject to the payment of restitution in an amount equal to the loss resulting from the violation. 

     In order to facilitate the return of beverage containers under the bill, the bill would require each dealer who sells filled returnable beverage containers for off-site consumption to provide, either on the premises where sales are made or within 100 yards thereof, a reverse vending machine or other convenient means by which empty returnable containers may be returned and a cash refund issued to the person who is returning them.  The bill would additionally require a dealer to post written notice, in the area where returnable containers are redeemed, notifying consumers that they may be liable for the payment of restitution in association with any improper container returns made thereby.  Any dealer who fails to comply with either of these requirements would be subject to a civil penalty of $50 per day of violation.  Certain manufacturers of large quantities of beverages would also be required to use returnable containers that have a designated symbol, mark, or other distinguishing characteristic, approved by the Department of Environmental Protection (DEP), which is sufficient to enable a reverse vending machine to determine whether the container is returnable and is eligible for a refund.  A manufacturer who does not use designated containers when required by the Department of the Treasury would be subject to a civil penalty of up to $2,000.

     Under the bill’s provisions, if a distributor, in a single year, is an under-redeemer of beverage containers, meaning that the distributor has collected more money in container deposits than the distributor has expended in container refunds, the distributor will be required to pay, to the Department of the Treasury, the value of the unclaimed deposits, less the value of any over-redemption credit authorized under the bill.  An over-redemption credit may be issued, by the Department of the Treasury, to any distributor who, in a single year, expends more money in container refunds than the distributor collects through deposits, and this credit may be carried forward for the next three years to offset any payments owed by the distributor upon becoming an under-redeemer.  However, if an over-redeemer is not planning to continue making container deposits in subsequent years, the Department of the Treasury may allow the over-redeemer, on a one-time basis, to carry the value of the credit back into prior years in order to realize its value.  In order to reduce the costs owed by an under-redeemer and reduce the amounts expended by an over-redeemer, the bill would authorize an under-redeemer to purchase empty redeemed containers from another distributor who is an over-redeemer in the same year.

     The bill would require the DEP to authorize and provide for the establishment, licensure, and operation of beverage container redemption centers, throughout the State, for the bill’s purposes.  Each such redemption center would be authorized to engage in the bulk collection of redeemable containers, in accordance with various requirements established in the bill, through the use of either or both an account-based bulk processing program or a bag-drop program, as such programs are defined in the bill.  Except as otherwise provided by the bill, each such redemption center would be required to remain open and available to accept redeemable containers on a daily basis, seven days a week, for at least 10 hours a day from Monday through Saturday, and for at least six hours a day on Sunday.  The redemption centers established and operated, pursuant to the bill, are to supplement, but not supplant, the consumer return of redeemable containers to dealers under the bill.

     The bill would further require each distributor of beverages, unless otherwise specified in a contract executed with a dealer, to offer to provide a collection service, for redeemable containers, to each dealer or other establishment that allows for the on-site consumption of beverages in the State.  Such collection service is to provide for the regular collection of all redeemable containers stored by such dealers and other establishments, in accordance with the following collection schedule:

     (1)   if the dealer or other establishment has an on-site consumption capacity of 50 or more persons at a time, the collection system is to provide for all redeemable containers stored thereby, at least once per week; and

     (2)   if the dealer or other establishment has an on-site consumption capacity of fewer than 50 persons at a time, the collection system is to provide for all redeemable containers stored thereby to be collected, by the distributor, at least twice per month.

     A distributor operating a collection system, pursuant to the bill, would be required to:  (1) provide all of equipment and accessories necessary to facilitate the collection of redeemable containers under the system; (2) take appropriate and necessary steps to ensure that redeemable beverage containers are emptied and sorted on site, if possible; (3) issue appropriate refunds, for all redeemable containers collected under the system, not more than seven consecutive business days after such containers are collected; and (4) if the distributor requires the use of a digital application to facilitate the issuance of requisite refunds, assign a unique identification code to each participating dealer or other establishment and require each such dealer or other establishment to attach, to each container stored thereby, a label containing that identification code. 

     The bill would establish four new funds for the moneys that will be obtained through the implementation of the bill’s provisions:  (1) the Beverage Container Deposit Fund; (2) the Beverage Container Deposit Enforcement Fund; (3) the Clean-Up and Redevelopment Trust Fund; and (4) the Community Pollution Prevention Grant Fund. 

     Moneys that are paid by under-redeemers, pursuant to the bill, are to be deposited into the Beverage Container Deposit Fund.  The first $1 million in the BCD Fund is to be annually disbursed to the Beverage Container Deposit Enforcement Fund for use by the State Police in enforcing, and investigating violations of, the bill’s provisions.  However, if the balance in the Enforcement Fund exceeds $3 million, disbursements to that fund will be suspended until the balance falls below $2 million.  Of the amounts remaining in the Deposit Fund following the requisite disbursement to the Enforcement Fund, 75 percent is to be disbursed to the Clean-Up and Redevelopment Trust Fund, and 25 percent is to be apportioned to each dealer in the State, based on the number of empty returnable containers handled by each dealer.

     In addition to the moneys disbursed thereto from the Beverage Container Deposit Fund, the Clean-Up and Redevelopment Trust Fund would also be credited with all penalty and restitution amounts that are imposed and collected by a court for violations of the bill’s provisions.  For each of the three fiscal years next following the bill’s effective date, the first $15 million annually deposited in the trust fund is to be disbursed, in equal amounts, to eight different clean-up and redevelopment funds currently existing in the State and identified in the bill.  Of the moneys remaining in the trust fund in those first three fiscal years, and of the total sum of moneys deposited in the trust fund in the fourth and each subsequent fiscal year following the bill’s effective date, 80 percent of such moneys are to be equally disbursed, on an annual basis, to the eight different clean-up and redevelopment funds identified in the bill, and 10 percent of such moneys are to be disbursed to the Community Pollution Prevention Grant Fund, newly established pursuant to the bill.

     Moneys in the Community Pollution Prevention Grant Fund are to be used, by the DEP, to provide grants to local governments, local health departments, regional planning agencies, and similar entities (in amounts of up to $100,000 per year for each recipient) to finance various programs and activities related to water pollution prevention and litter clean-up, as specified in the bill.  Each grant recipient would be required to provide a financial match equaling 25 to 50 percent of the grant award.

     Finally, this bill would repeal section 5 of P.L.2007, c.311 (C.13:1E-96.6), which currently provides for the State’s existing recycling tax to become inoperable if State or federal law requires a deposit on, or establishes a refund value, for a beverage container, as this bill would do.  This repeal will ensure that the State’s existing recycling tax continues to remain in effect, notwithstanding this bill’s enactment.