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Entries in plastic bag ban (2)


Plastic Bag Ban, Bottle Bill Get Last-Minute Green Lights

Two of this session's prominent bills involve plastic products. Last week both of them – the plastic bag ban and the Bottle Bill expansion – barely squeaked out of committee before a deadline that would have rendered them dead this session.

Senate Bill 536, the plastic bag ban, moved out the Senate Environment and Natural Resources Committee on a party-line vote. It didn't quite make it to the Senate floor, where the vote count is 15-15. Instead, Senate President Peter Courtney, D-Salem, referred it to Senate Rules, which isn't subject to deadlines to move bills.

The battle over SB 536 pits the plastics industry against environmental groups and grocers, such as Safeway and Fred Meyer, which are the main proponents of the bill. Grocers are eager to head off municipal limits on plastic bags that would create a piecemeal system of plastic bag bans and taxes, resulting, they say, in a bureaucratic nightmare for them to navigate.

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Plastic Bags: Useful for Carrying Things and… Collectors Items?

My how times have changed. After the Oregon legislature and the City of Portland both failed to ban plastic bags in 2010, a plastic bag ban proposal enjoys bipartisan support in the coming legislative session.

Senate Bill 536 was introduced during the legislative organizational days this month. Environmentalists are leading the charge to ban plastic bags, citing litter and other environmental impacts as a reason to get rid of them.

A nickel charge on paper bags helped gain the support of grocers, who want to recoup costs. The nickel charge also will encourage people to bring their own reusable bags, further reducing waste.

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