SLO County’s ordinance against single-use plastic bags went into effect more than a week ago, and I for one do not support it. The ordinance does nothing to keep plastic waste from our landfills, nor, for that matter, keep people from using plastic bags. It is unfair to consumers and does little to stop the use of plastic in our community.
Previously, retailers provided plastic or paper bags to the customer as part of the deal for shopping at their store and buying their goods. It would be like a restaurant charging for napkins that you need and expect when dinning with them. Practically everything in our stores is packaged in plastic. Why is it fair to charge the consumer for plastic bags to carry items purchased from the store, when manufacturers bag, wrap, and package everything in plastic themselves?
It seems to me the only difference now is that money is being made from selling the once free bags, now 10 cents a bag. We, the consumers, are once again getting screwed; add it on to the list including insurers, banks, and oil companies. This ordinance is another way to charge for something that was once a customer service, and they are getting away with it.
Furthermore, the reusable bags being sold at a majority of retailers and stores are made of plastic! How does that help our environment? If this ordinance was really meant to help consumers be “green,” cotton fiber bags would be made mandatory. For that matter, no plastic bags should be available at all, and customers would have no choice but to provide their own bags.
The bottom line is that charging for the use of plastic bags that were once free is nothing more than an exercise in greed. With rising gasoline prices and consumer goods becoming more expensive, the last thing we need is another extraneous tax.