NTU Comments on Minnesota's Taxpayer-Friendly Container Deposit Legislation


February 20, 2024

The Honorable Rick Hansen, Chair
The Honorable Sydney Jordan, Vice Chair
Environment and Natural Resources Finance and Policy Committee
Minnesota House of Representatives
100 Rev. Doctor Martin Luther King, Jr. Blvd.
St. Paul, MN 55155

Dear Chair Hansen, Vice Chair Jordan, and Members of the Committee:

On behalf of the National Taxpayers Union (NTU), America’s oldest taxpayer advocacy organization, and
its many supporters in Minnesota, we write to offer our comments regarding HF 3200 and its underlying
concepts, both of which we understand will be a topic in today’s meeting of the Committee.

Minnesota lawmakers have an opportunity to lead the way with a new beverage container deposit
program that could, if properly structured, not only save taxpayer dollars but also dramatically increase
recycling rates, create jobs and improve the state’s economy. A successful outcome for taxpayers greatly
depends upon the specific language the Committee now chooses to offer to the full House.

Under model versions of the program, consumers would pay a deposit fee when purchasing beverage
containers from commonly recycled materials such as plastic, aluminum, or glass. The consumer would
then return the container to the place of purchase and receive their full refund. The program would be
managed and paid for by a private sector entity, therefore not adding to the state’s budget. The private
sector entity would provide oversight to ensure the program operates properly and efficiently.

NTU urges you to ensure that HF 3200 hews to these general principles as the legislation undergoes
another reading. In addition, there are specific points to which legislation in this area should adhere to
obtain the best possible outcome for taxpayers. Accordingly, NTU wishes to offer the attached analysis to
aid you in your deliberations over the best design of a container deposit program involving a PPP.

We are hopeful that, guided by a thoughtful legislative process, a final version of HF 3200 will
incorporate and reflect best practices for a new container deposit program that taxpayers will be able to
support. NTU looks forward to engaging with the Committee on this and other bills of interest in the days


Leah Vukmir                                                   
Senior Vice President of State Affairs 

Pete Sepp