Oregon’s first-in-the-nation Bottle Bill has been helping to solve problems since it was introduced in 1971.
In the early days, the creation of a deposit-and-refund system for drink containers helped to reduce litter. That’s still happening today. More recently, the Bottle Bill is also helping Oregonians save for future education expenses and increased financial security – all while doing their recycling.
Nearly $500,000 has been saved since Oregon State Treasury and BottleDrop partnered in November 2019 to allow people to transfer money from their bottle returns to an Oregon College Savings Plan account. The Oregon ABLE Savings Plan was added a year later. At 10 cents per container, that’s the equivalent of some 5 million cans and bottles redeemed.
In just the last year, 2,780 Oregonians steered nearly $350,000 from container redemptions directly to Oregon College Savings Plan and Oregon ABLE Savings Plan accounts. BottleDrop operates redemption centers statewide on behalf of the Oregon Beverage Recycling Cooperative, so people across Oregon can participate.
The Oregon College Savings Plan helps families save for higher education and job training, while also getting a tax credit and tax-free growth to encourage more saving. The Oregon ABLE Savings Plan allows families to save for disability-connected costs.
“We are thrilled that so many Oregonians are taking advantage of this easy opportunity to save for a better future for themselves and their loved ones,” said Michael Parker, Executive Director of the Oregon Treasury Savings Network, which administers both savings plans.
It’s simple to link your accounts so that money from container redemption at BottleDrop can automatically contribute to an Oregon College or Oregon ABLE Savings Plan. If you don’t have an account yet, they’re easy to open. Friends and family can also donate their can and bottle refunds by linking their BottleDrop account to your kid’s savings account.
“The partnership between BottleDrop and the Oregon College Savings Plan is making a meaningful difference for Oregonians,” said Eric Chambers, External Relations Director for the Oregon Beverage Recycling Cooperative. “Participants get to help keep Oregon beautiful by returning containers, ensure they are recycled domestically as Grade-A materials, and supercharge their education savings all at the same time.”
You can learn more at www.oregoncollegesavings.com/bottledrop.
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