AUGUSTA, ME - Maine is poised to become the next state to join California, Oregon, Rhode Island, Connecticut, Minnesota and Vermont in implementing a paint recycling program for the state.

With strong bi-partisan support, the Maine Legislature enacted a bill on June 18 that creates an industry-run collection and recycling program for leftover household paint. If allowed to become law by Governor Paul LePage, the bill (LD 1308) would save money for towns and taxpayers through a product stewardship program that would provide used paint collection sites at participating paint retail stores and transfer stations across Maine. The bill received a 28-7 vote in the Senate, and a 92-44 vote in the House. Governor LePage has 10 days to sign the bill, allow the bill to become law without his signature, or veto the bill.

Minnesota’s governor signed H.F. No. 976 on May 24, making Minnesota the fifth state to implement a paint-recycling program. Minnesota followed Oregon (2009), California (2010), Connecticut (2011) and Rhode Island (2012). Paint stewardship programs are currently operating in Oregon and California, with Connecticut, Rhode Island, and Minnesota to follow over the next year. PaintCare Inc. - a nonprofit organization established by the American Coatings Association - will fund and oversee the implementation of Minnesota's program, as it has done and will do for the other states. Minnesota’s legislature approved the legislation on May 18, and according to the American Coatings Association, implementation is expected on July 1, 2014. 10 days after Minnesota’s governor signed that state’s bill, Vermont’s governor signed his state’s paint take-back program on June 3.