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Falmouth—On Thursday, April 5, the town of Falmouth became the 208th municipality in Massachusetts to pass a resolution endorsing the Updated Bottle Bill (HB890/SB1650). The bill would add water, juice, and other containers to those beverage containers which already have a 5 cent deposit. “ This was a long battle that involved bringing it before the Board of Selectmen twice, getting a warrant article issued, attending precinct meetings, getting our message out, and sitting through 15 hours of Town Meeting until the article was taken up for vote. But we did it,” said Janet Kluever, a Falmouth resident who has taken on this issue for the Falmouth Climate Action Team. A statewide poll conducted by MassINC Polling Group last year showed 77% support of the Updated Bottle Bill, with particularly high numbers for coastal areas.
Frustration with the Legislature, which has been sitting on this bill for over a decade, is mounting, and municipal actions like this are aimed at prompting legislative action. Falmouth is represented in the Legislature by Rep. Tim Madden, a longtime supporter of the bill, Rep. David Viera, who has not endorsed the bill, and Senate President Therese Murray who has not endorsed the bill. “We hope our elected officials now see clearly that this issue is a priority for Falmouth residents,” said Kluever. “This bill will reduce litter on our beaches, and save Falmouth thousands of dollars in trash disposal costs.”
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