Debate Over Penalties Facing Fraudulent Bottle Returns
The House Regulatory Reform Committee debated bills relating to the fraudulent return of out-of-state cans and bottles for refunds in Michigan. If passed, an individual attempting to return between 100 and 10,000 non-returnable containers could face up to 93 days in jail along with a $1,000 fine. Currently, the law only penalizes those who have actually returned fraudulent containers.
Angela Madden of Michigan Beer and Wine Wholesalers emphasized how this practice hurts businesses. Many Michigan businesses lack the proper machines to read the special mark or code on containers that are meant to prevent this type of fraud.
The committee has yet to vote on the legislation, and while only a dime per returned container does not seem like much, thousands of these returns could be costing the state a pretty penny.
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