(KCPW News) Electronics are the fastest growing waste stream in Utah, but a bill aimed at curbing this trend was shot down by lawmakers this morning. Republican Representative Rebecca Edwards says it’s becoming a tremendous burden on county landfills and consumers are paying the cost in taxes. Her bill would have created an electronic recycling program within the Department of Environmental Quality, paid for by electronics manufacturers. But lawmakers on the committee rejected it.
“In Utah there’s a real concern with overly burdensome government regulations and I think there was maybe not an understanding that this actually doesn’t fall into that category,” said Edwards. “I think maybe there wasn’t a complete understanding of the compatibility between a voluntary program and this bill.”
Republican Representative Ken Ivory is one lawmaker who voted against the bill. He says if people can still throw a television in the garbage with no penalty, than this bill doesn’t solve anything.
“If we have that requirement somehow without being too heavy handed, well then you’ve got the manufacturers and retailers doing what they’re already doing, come in bring this into my store and I’ll give you a $10 coupon,” says Ivory. “Then that really starts to develop, but we haven’t addressed the problem on the level that it needs to be addressed.”
Edwards ran a similar bill last year, but it never passed in the Senate. Her bill was rejected by the House Public Utilities and Technology Committee on a 4-to-6 vote.
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