ALBANY, N.Y. (NEWS10)—For several months, Jade Eddy has been sounding the alarm—calling on lawmakers to pass legislation to increase the 3.5 cent handling fee for bottle redemption centers to at least 5 cents to help them stay afloat.
“The writing is on the wall,” said Eddy. “If I sell my house and take money to put money into my business to hold me over until January, I’m basically throwing money on a burning fire.”
Eddy’s decision to close her business on November 30th comes just days after testifying before state lawmakers, urging them to take immediate action by separating the handling fee from the Bigger, Better Bottle Bill. She also called for an emergency session.
News 10 has been told there are no plans to for the legislature to reconvene session before January.
However, Eddy is not alone in her struggles. Other closures have been happening throughout the state, according to the Empire State Redemption Association.
“Due to tough economic times, however, over 100 redemption centers have gone out of business,” said Peter Sidote at the hearing held on October 23.
The Bigger, Better Bottle Bill, which would have included an increase to the handling fee, bottle deposits, and expanded accepted containers, did not pass in this year’s legislative session. According to lawmakers, small liquor stores have concerns with the bill.
Even though her own business is closing, Eddy said she will continue to advocate for others in the redemption center industry.