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File #: HCC-179-FY23    Version: 1 Name:
Type: Discussion Item Status: Agenda Ready
File created: 12/12/2022 In control: City Council
On agenda: 12/19/2022 Final action:
Title: Bring Your Own Bags
Sponsors: Ben Simasek, Danny Schaible, Edouard Haba
Indexes: Legislative, Ordinance
Attachments: 1. Bring Your Own Bag Ordiance - Draft
Date Ver.Action ByActionResultAction DetailsMeeting DetailsVideo
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Submitted by: Councilmember Ben Simasek
Submitting Department: Legislative
Agenda Section: Discussion

Item Title:
Bring Your Own Bags

Suggested Action:
I move that the Mayor and Council authorize the City Attorney to draft an ordinance regulating carryout bags from retail and food service establishments in the City of Hyattsville. The ordinance shall prohibit the provision of plastic bags at the point of sale for customers. Businesses shall be required to charge customers a minimum 10 cent fee for paper or other reusable carryout bags in order to incentivize customers to bring their own bags.

Summary Background:
Pollution from plastics contributes to an array of environmental problems, from the harmful effects and greenhouse gas emissions from the extraction of fossil fuels and the production process to the downstream impacts of litter on animal and ecosystem health and the presence of microplastics in our waterways and even in our bodies.

Given Hyattsville is bordered by the two major tributaries of the Anacostia River and is part of the broader Chesapeake Bay watershed, our city has a duty to be a responsible steward of these local waterways. Plastic carryout bags are one type of litter likely to be found in our local parks and rivers since they are both ubiquitous and easily carried by the wind and street runoff. They are not accepted by the County's recycling facility. When they are improperly disposed of in the recycling bin, plastic bags can clog machinery and create a safety hazard.

Single-use paper carryout bags also pose human health and environmental hazards. The manufacture of paper carryout bags requires the felling of massive numbers of trees, large amounts of water and energy, and toxic chemicals. It is a major source of air pollution, acid rain, and water pollution, with associated health and environmental impacts.

The dual objective of this ordinance is to reduce plastic pollution and incentivize reusa...

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