Plastic bag ban agreement

By CMTA Staff

Capitol Update, Jan. 30, 2014 Share this on FacebookTweet thisEmail this to a friend

Last week, the Sacramento Bee announced that a deal had been reached between Senator Alex Padilla (D-Pacoima) and Senators Kevin De Leon (D-Los Angeles) and Ricardo Lara (D-Bell Gardens), who had stalled Padilla’s attempt to ban plastic bags last year in SB 405. Under the agreement, disposable plastic bags would be banned from large grocery check-out stands in California and consumers would pay at least a dime for a paper or re-usable bag, effective January 2015. The ban would be extended to pharmacies and liquor stores in 2016. The three senators will jointly introduce a new bill in the current session.

Additionally, SB 270 also authored by Padilla will apparently be gutted and amended to provide $2 million from state recycling funds to be earmarked for current plastic bag makers to apply for grants to re-train their workers or re-engineer their operations to make plastic bags that meet the criteria for the sale of plastic bags in the future. Such bags will have to contain at least 20 percent recycled content and be strong enough for more than 125 uses. 

It has yet to be determined if $2 million is enough to handle the retrofitting of all of the plastic bag manufacturing in the state and does not take into consideration the impact on paper bag manufacturers who already have an extremely high recovery rate and employ a significant number of people in the state. While the above agreement virtually assures that the bill will get out of the Senate, it will still also have to pass through the Assembly.

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