Maine Rejects Cigarette Butt Bill
AUGUSTA, Maine â€“â€“ A bill that would have created the nation's first cigarette butt deposit law was overwhelmingly rejected Tuesday by the Maine House.
The sponsor, state Rep. Joseph Brooks, had defended his proposal as an anti-litter measure that would generate millions of dollars for the state as well as businesses that would handle discarded butts.
However, the House voted 107-29 against the bill, which also faces a Senate vote.
Under Brooks' proposal, smokers would have paid a $1 surcharge on every cigarette pack purchased in Maine.
Then they could redeem the butts for a nickel each, turning them in at redemption centers in the same way soda and beer cans and bottles are redeemed in Maine and elsewhere.
Brooks and others estimated that many cigarette butts would never be redeemed, leaving the deposits to the state.
Maine smokers consume 2.2 billion cigarettes a year.