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New legislation could allow CT municipalities to ban the sale of mini liquor bottles

An empty miniature bottle that once contained liquor rests on a street near a sidewalk, Monday, April 3, 2023, in Boston. A Boston city councilor has proposed barring city liquor stores from selling the single-serve bottles that hold 100 milliliters or less of booze both as a way to address alcohol abuse and excessive litter. (AP Photo/Steven Senne)
Steven Senne
An empty miniature bottle that once contained liquor rests on a street near a sidewalk.

Connecticut municipalities may soon be able to decide whether their liquor stores are allowed to sell mini alcohol bottles, also called nips.

It’s in response to litter issues across the state.

Nips are 50-milliliter bottles that often sell between one and five dollars. They are often consumed soon after purchase, thrown out of car windows or left at outdoor venues.

Two years ago, Connecticut began collecting a five cent surcharge on the bottles. The money is redistributed to municipalities, to be used for litter remediation.

Around $9 million has been distributed from the program.

But environmental advocates have said the bottles are still all over the place, and a stronger law is needed.

State Representative Joseph Gresko, who chairs the Environment Committee, said he will introduce a bill that would allow towns and cities to decide whether or not their liquor stores sell nips.

The legislative session begins on Feb. 7.

Molly is a reporter covering Connecticut. She also produces Long Story Short, a podcast exploring public policy issues across Connecticut.