Litter tax

What is the litter tax?

It is a tax on manufacturers, wholesalers, and retailers of certain products which contribute to the litter problem in this state.

The 13 categories of products subject to the litter tax are:

  • food for human or pet consumption
  • groceries
  • cigarettes and tobacco products
  • soft drinks and carbonated beverages
  • beer and other malt beverages
  • wine
  • newspapers and magazines
  • household paper and paper products
  • glass containers
  • metal containers
  • plastic or fiber containers made of synthetic material
  • cleaning agents and toiletries
  • non-drug drugstore sundry items

How do I pay the tax?

It is reported on the excise tax return by taxpayers who manufacture or sell any of the listed products.

What rate do I pay?

The rate is .00015 of the taxable amount.

What are the funds used for?

The funds are used by Department of Ecology for a litter control program employing youth to clean up public places, and for public education and awareness programs relating to litter control and recycling.

Food sales exempt from Litter tax if consumed on seller's premises

Food and beverages consumed indoors at the seller's place of business or outdoors on a deck or patio at the seller's place of business are exempt from litter tax. However, sales of food and beverages ordered "to go" or for "delivery" to a customer are subject to litter tax.