The Mill Valley City Council has declared that single-use carry-out bags are a serious environmental concern and hope that charging for them will reduce contribution to the 19-billion distributed in California annually.
The Council will conduct a first reading of the ordinance that will establish a five-cent fee for grocery plastic bags at tonight’s meeting, followed by a second reading and adoption consideration on Sept. 16.
The agenda states staff has contacted all the stores subject to the proposed ordinance, and they are happy to report most stores do not use plastic bags.
According to the memorandum, all stores agreed that implementing the plastic bag restriction and establishing a five-cent fee within 60-days from the date of adoption was an adequate time frame in terms of educating staff and informing customers about the ordinance.
There are twelve stores in Mill Valley that are subject to the ordinance, including:
- Grocery stores: Whole Foods (Miller and East Blithedale locations), Safeway, Mill Valley Market
- Pharmacies: CVS, Rite Aid
- Convenience Stores/ MiniMarts: 7-Eleven, Jolly King, Grand Gasoline, Mill Valley 76, Miller Avenue Chevron, and Xtra Oil Co
Specialty stores such as Tyler Florence and hardware stores such as Goodman's are not subject to the ordinance.
The intent of the Marin
County model ordinance is to include "stores" that primarily sell
grocery or food related items, however, the council will conduct a review process six-months after
adoption that will consider broadened to include other or all retailers.
The Council will address concerns brought up by residents and businesses at the meeting, beginning at 7:30 p.m.
Mill Valley is not alone in their movement to banish single-use plastic bag waste; several cities and counties have banned or begun charging a waste fee as a consumer deterrent.
- Marin County began charging $0.05 in 2011
- San Francisco lead the State by adopting a ban in 2007, and expanding it in 2012 to charge $0.10 per bag at checkout.
- City of San Jose adopted the steepest bag charges, up to $0.25 for paper in 2010
- LA County and the Town of Fairfax both have varied ban regulations adopted as well
- City of Oakland adopted bans in 2007 that were revoked after lawsuit
- The City of Davis is currently debating an all out ban on plastic bags
Do you feel the five-cent fee will be an effective deterrent?