July 2, 2013

Getting rid of old paint to be easier in Maine

Gov. LePage lets the industry-backed recycling bill become law despite his opposition to a new fee.

By Colin Woodard cwoodard@pressherald.com
Staff Writer

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Gov. Paul LePage has allowed a new paint recycling law to be enacted without his signature, making Maine the seventh state to approve an industry-sponsored collection and recycling program for household paint.

"We certainly hope that all those benefits of the program come to fruition," she said. "It will remain to be seen, with Maine's population being spread out over so many rural areas, how effectively some of those areas will be served."

She said the DEP will be engaged in ensuring that collection sites are set up correctly and that oil-based paints and other hazardous substances are handled and transported safely. She said it remains to be seen how much staff time and department resources the program will require.

The law received strong bipartisan support from the Legislature, passing 97-45 in the House and 28-7 in the Senate. LePage could have vetoed the bill, but instead allowed it to become law without his signature Saturday evening.

His spokeswoman, Adrienne Bennett, did not respond to a request for comment Tuesday.

"We look forward to building on our experiences in Oregon and California to launch a program in Maine that not only works for the paint industry, but also meets the public's need for convenience, efficiency, and cost effectiveness," said Alison Keane, vice president of the paint industry's American Coatings Association, in a prepared statement.

Colin Woodard can be contacted at 791-6317 or at:

cwoodard@pressherald.com 

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