Report: Simsbury Nets Nice Payment for Nip Bottles Over Last Year

SIMSBURY, CT — Connecticut’s “nickel-per-nip” environmental stewardship program generated more than $4.2 million for Connecticut cities and towns in its first full year.

A figure that includes $15,452.82 for the town of Simsbury from October 1, 2021 to September 30 of this year.

Under a law passed last year, a 5-cent surcharge is imposed on the sale of each 50ml nip container at the point of sale.

Anyone who has walked a local street or sidewalk knows what these bottles are, as they often litter many public spaces, creating an unsightly situation for pedestrians and residents alike.

Each April and October, each municipality receives 5 cents for every pinch sold within its borders during the previous six months.

Recently, checks for $2.3 million were mailed to Connecticut municipalities representing pinch sales from April 1, 2022 through September 30, 2022.

For Simsbury, that meant a check for $7,870.52, which is part of the annual haul from October 1, 2021 to September 30.

This was a total of 151,646 pinch bottles sold in Simsbury from April 1 to September 30.

Proposed by Three Tiers for Connecticut and adopted by the General Assembly in 2021, the program is designed to help cities and towns ensure the collection and proper disposal of 50ml “nip” bottles.

Three Tiers for Connecticut is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization representing all of Connecticut’s major wine and spirits wholesalers, suppliers and retailers, representing all three tiers of the beverage alcohol industry . .

“This program has exceeded our expectations in its first year, and we are thrilled with it,” said Lawrence F. Cafero Jr., president and treasurer of Three Tiers Connecticut and executive director of Wine & Spirits Wholesalers of Connecticut, Inc.

“Now, as expected, the money generated from environmental fees is in the hands of our cities and towns, many of whom use those dollars to keep their roadsides, waterways and public spaces litter-free.”

Since the first payment was sent to cities in May, Connecticut municipalities have used the funding for a number of waste reduction efforts.

Some cities have used the funding to support recycling coordinator positions, while others have partnered with local nonprofits to clean up trash.

“This simple program is a national model and it’s making a real difference in our state,” Cafero said.

“The Connecticut wine and spirits industry recognized that waste from our 50ml containers was an issue that needed to be addressed, so our members came up with a solution that provides direct funding to municipalities so they have more resources to fight waste. We’re excited to see these nickels get to work.