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Bottle deposit exemption extended for 30 days

Bottle deposit exemption extended for 30 days

R's Redemption Center

People wait to redeem their cans and bottles Thursday at R's Redemption Center in Waterloo.

WATERLOO — Iowans will continue to have limited options to redeem their beverage cans and bottles for deposit.

Gov. Kim Reynolds’ decision Thursday to extend a public health disaster emergency through July 25 means retailers remain exempt from having to redeem containers for the nickel deposit.

The original proclamation in March, signed to stem the spread of COVID-19, had been set to expire Friday.

Redemption centers continue to operate but appear to be struggling with increased business with many retailers out of the picture.

R’s Redemption Center, 322 Nevada St., Waterloo, and Metro Area Redemption, 9301 University Ave., Cedar Falls, have been running with reduced hours. Long lines have been common at both sites.

Hy-Vee has decided to open redemption centers at many of its grocery stores, but only those with machines open to access from outside the store, said Tina Potthoff, senior vice president of communications. That includes the Crossroads Hy-Vee in Waterloo and College Square Hy-Vee in Cedar Falls.

Local recycling programs have seen an increase in people disposing of aluminum cans and bottles, apparently giving up on hopes of getting their deposits back.

But some charitable organizations raising money through can drives reportedly have seen an increase in donations.

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