Governor signs Reps. Lisa Cutter and Jeni Arndt’s bill to improve Colorado’s low recycling rates

DENVER, CO– During a virtual bill signing today, Governor Polis signed SB20-055, Representative Jeni Arndt and Lisa Cutter’s bill to improve Colorado’s recycling rates by directing the Department of Public Health and Environment (CDPHE) to begin creating the structure for a recycling market development center, providing property tax reimbursements to small businesses that recycle and laying the framework for a statewide education campaign to further inform Colorado residents about recycling. 

“Coloradans care deeply about protecting the environment,” said Rep. Cutter, D-Morrison. “Improving Colorado’s recycling rates is as good for the economy as it is good for the planet. Through tax breaks for businesses that recycle, educational campaigns and more, this new law will help boost our state’s low recycling rates and make sure we’re doing the most that we can do to protect our environment and the Colorado Way of Life we all know and love.”

“This new law is a long time coming,” said Rep. Arndt, D-Fort Collins. “Colorado’s recycling rates have been a concern of ours for a very long time, and this bill takes several important steps towards improving them. I’m proud of the work we did on the Zero Waste Legislative Interim Committee and throughout this legislative session to protect our environment while supporting responsible business practices.” 

In 2018, Colorado generated 8.8 million tons of landfill, while the state’s recycling was 17.2 percent, well below the national average of 34 percent. Only half of Colorado counties have recycling available for residents and are collecting data to report recycling rates. SB20-055 was developed by the members of the Zero Waste Interim Committee.