Florida Bill Could Ban Single-Use Plastic Bags and Charge Fee for Paper
Statewide Law Will Have a Big Impact
The State of Florida is on the verge of some big and exciting, eco-changes if a proposed bag ban bill by Democratic Senator Dwight Bullard takes effect. Senate Bill 0722 sets out to create statewide rules that will regulate disposable, single-use plastic, and recyclable paper bags. Local governments will be able to opt-in to the law if they choose.
Specifics of the Bill
The law will apply to certain stores in counties or municipalities where the local government adopts the provisions of the act, and it will create requirements for participating stores to ban disposable plastic bags and charge a fee for every recyclable paper bag given out to customers. The bill also outlines how the money collected by the fee will be allocated – 50 percent of the money will be given to the school districts from which the fees are collected. The remainder of the fee money can be kept by the stores to help offset their expense of complying with the law.
Advantages of a Statewide Law
By implementing a statewide law, local counties and municipalities can simply tap into the existing law – they do not need to use time and resources to get their own law together, so the statewide law is more efficient and cost-effective. When individual counties and cities pass disposable bag bans things can get tricky.
Each ban can be completely different – so both plastic and paper bags may be banned in one area, but a neighboring city may allow paper bags for a fee, while still another nearby town may allow paper bags for free. While it is great to allow each city or county to tailor the ban to fit their wants and needs when neighboring areas have different laws it can be difficult for shoppers who visit each area. A statewide law establishes one set of rules that are consistent in every place the law is on the books.
This one law can have a trickle-down effect that will benefit the people of the state in so many ways. A law that regulates the use of disposable bags for an entire state can have a huge impact on the amount of discarded bags that pollute oceans, beaches, and neighborhoods that harm wildlife and their habitats. With a decrease in the use of disposable bags shoppers will turn to reusable grocery bags that can be used again and again and do not wreak havoc on the environment. When shoppers make the switch to sustainable reusable bags the resources used to make disposable bags are spared and stores also save on the cost of providing disposable bags for their customers.
There is still a lot of work to be done before Florida counties and municipalities will be able to opt-in to the law, but we at Factory Direct Promos are anxiously waiting and hoping the measure passes for the environmental health of our home state.
That is truly great for the environment as it reduces the use of plastic.