Christine Stuart photo

It’s rare state lawmakers see a recycling bill that bottlers, trash haulers, grocers, and environmentalists can all agree on.

This year Rep. Linda Schofield, D-Simsbury, was able to make the impossible happen and bring them all together to support HB 5138.

When it comes to recycling “we can do better,” Schofield said Friday.

“We have to do better in this state,” Schofield said. She said the state needs to make recycling easy by placing recycle bins beside trash cans in public places around the state and give people incentives to recycle.

The bill, which will receive a public hearing in the Environment Committee on Monday, also increases recycling efforts by offering grants to implement single-stream recycling in six municipalities and establishes a commission to study the outcome of the pilot program.

It also requires privately owned companies to put recycling bins in public areas and gives conservation officers with the Department of Environmental Protection the power to arrest people for failure to comply with the specifics of the bill.

Rep. Chris Stone, D-East Hartford, who chairs the General Law Committee which has been the end of the road for recycling bills in the past, said ‘there is a way to achieve the goals of the General Law Committee and the Environment Committee.” He said Schofield’s bill goes a long way toward finding common ground.