[:en]Latest Updates on 2017 Shopping Bag Law[:]

[:en]It changes all the time: laws about shopping bags. First something’s legal, and then it’s not. Or maybe it is in some cases, but not others.

The general idea is to reduce impact on the environment and relieve pressure to fill landfills. Some states want to ban plastic bags altogether. Others just want a recycling program in place.

It’s tough to stay up on the law. Here’s some recent highlights:

  1. Right Now, These States Have Banned Plastic Bags

Hawaii has a statewide ban on plastic bags for grocery stores. They like to keep things simple. California has a ban in place, along with recycling and reuse programs. So does Michigan, Idaho, Arizona, and Missouri.

If you’re a national or regional company, there’s a good chance you have some customers in California. However, retailers can get around that law by charging 10 cents for plastic bags. Currently, large food retailers, pharmacies, corner markets, and liquor stores are the only business types required to adhere to this law.

A referendum with a narrow margin of 52% to 48% confirmed consumers in California are in agreement with this law.

  1. What’s Going on with Texas Bag Law

Texas is turning into a battleground for shopping bag law. In August 2016, a state appeals court struck down Laredo’s attempt at banning plastic bags locally. The Fourth Court of Appeals supported the view that state law regulating solid waste disposal pre-empts local plastic bag law.

Back in 2011, Brownsville, Texas decided to put a $1 environmental fee on plastic bags. It’s collected more than $4 million as a result.

However, Texas Attorney Ken Paxton claims this is a violation of Texas law in that it’s an illegal sales tax. He proposes that Brownsville eliminate their fee, and in return the lawsuit will be dropped.

The case is currently pending, so there’s no resolution yet.

  1. The Real Battle is At the City Level

Cities across the nation are fighting out whether or not to ban plastic bags. Businesses usually resist the change.

Bans have failed and succeeded at various cities throughout the nation. Coastal North Carolina, and Portland, for example, have successfully banned plastic bag use.

Keep Your Ears Open

Plastic bag bans and use are changing rapidly. There’s a strong push on both sides. So, you’re going to have to be alert as the law changes. But don’t worry – we’ll keep you informed.

To learn more about bag laws, contact one of our retail specialists at info@pollock.com or by simply calling 855.239.5153[:]