PaintCare Fee

PaintCare is funded by a fee (referred to as the PaintCare fee) which is applied to the purchase price of new paint sold in each state that has passed a paint stewardship law. The fee is paid to PaintCare by paint manufacturers and is then added to the wholesale and retail purchase price of paint, passing the cost of managing leftover paint to everyone who buys and uses it. You may see a line item on your receipt or invoice for each container of paint you purchase.

  • The PaintCare fee is not a tax; it does not go to the state.
  • The PaintCare fee is not a deposit; you don’t get it back when you drop off paint.

The fee funds all aspects of the paint stewardship program. This includes paint collection, transportation, recycling, public outreach, and program administration, as well as managing “legacy” paint—material that has been accumulating in homes and businesses since before the program began. There is no charge for dropping off paint at a PaintCare drop-off site.

Current Fee Structure for All Programs

The PaintCare fee varies by state and container sizes as follows:

 Half pint or smallerLarger than half pint up to smaller than 1 gallon1 gallon1 gallon up to 2 gallonsLarger than 1 gallon up to 5 gallonsLarger than 2 gallons up to 5 gallons
California$0.00$0.35 $0.75 $1.60
Colorado$0.00$0.35 $0.75 $1.60
Connecticut‡$0.00$0.35 $0.75 $1.60
District of Columbia*$0.00$0.45 $0.95 $1.95
Maine‡$0.00$0.35 $0.75 $1.60
Minnesota$0.00$0.49 $0.99$1.99
Oregon$0.00$0.45 $0.95 $1.95
Rhode Island‡$0.00$0.35 $0.75 $1.60
Vermont‡$0.00$0.49 $0.99$1.99
Washington$0.00$0.45 $0.95 $1.95

*On August 23, 2021, a proposal for a fee reduction was submitted to the District Department of Energy and Environment (DOEE) as part of a proposed revision to PaintCare’s program plan for the District of Columbia paint stewardship program. Following approval by DOEE, it is anticipated that the fee reduction will take effect on or after January 1, 2022.

The proposed fee in the District of Columbia is based on container size as follows:

Container SizeCurrent FeeProposed Fee
Half pint or smaller$0.00$0.00
Larger than half pint up to smaller than 1 gallon$0.45 $0.30
1 gallon up to 2 gallons$0.95 $0.70
Larger than 2 gallons up to 5 gallons$1.95 $1.60

‡The PaintCare fee categories in Connecticut, Maine, Rhode Island, and Vermont will be changed to include 2 gallon containers of covered products in the 1 gallon container category. This change will take effect January 1, 2022.