Government South Orange

South Orange Plastic Bag Ban Goes Into Effect January 1, 2020

On July 8, the South Orange Village Board of Trustees adopted an ordinance banning plastic bags for point-of-purchase sales, effective January 1, 2020. Here are the details from South Orange Township:

Bring Your Own Bag to South Orange Starting January 1, 2020 

South Orange, NJ (July 26, 2019) On Monday July 8th the South Orange Board of Trustees passed ordinance #2019-15 encouraging shoppers to bring reusable carry-out bags, eliminating single use plastic carry-out bags, and putting a 5¢ fee on paper carry-out bags.

“Our goal is to incentivize shoppers to make the most sustainable shopping choice and start bringing their own reusable bags when they shop in South Orange,” said Village President Sheena Collum. “Our local recycling program will not take plastic bags and only a tiny portion ever get recycled. Paper bags cost the retailers more and aren’t a great option either. We think this new ordinance will have a positive impact and start our residents and shoppers thinking about other ways they can work together with local businesses to become more sustainable.”

The new law goes into effect on January 1, 2020 so shoppers and retailers have time to adjust. Plastic carry-out bags will be eliminated and a 5¢ fee will be placed on paper carry-out bags provided by the retailer. Shoppers are encouraged to use whatever type of reusable carry-out bags they wish to provide and the Village will distribute reusable bags throughout autumn of 2019. For more specific information on this initiative go to the South Orange Village website at http://www.southorange.org/bag

From the website:

On July 8, 2019 the South Orange Board of Trustees passed ordinance #2019-15 to promote the use of reusable bags and reduce the use of disposable paper and plastic non-reusable carry-out bags by customers of retail establishments in the Township of South Orange Village.

  • Shoppers B.Y.O.B! Please bring your own reusable carry-out bags.
  • Single use plastic carry-out bags are prohibited.
  • Paper carry-out bags have a 5¢ fee
  • These types of bags are still allowed for free:
    • Produce Bags (for bulk items, such as fruit, vegetables, nuts, grains, candies, or small hardware items).
    • Bags used to contain or wrap frozen foods, meat, or fish, whether packaged or not.
    • Bags used to contain unwrapped prepared foods or bakery goods.
    • Pharmacy prescription bags.
    • Bags used to contain or wrap flowers, potted plants, or other items where dampness may be an issue.
    • Bags used to contain live animals, such as fish or insects sold in pet stores.
    • Paper bags for gift wrapping or restaurant doggy bags.

The purpose of this law is to make local shopping more sustainable, reduce litter, protect the environment, and remove hard-to-recycle bags from our waste stream.

FAQs:

1.What counts as a carry-out bag?
Bags that are provided by retail establishments to customers, at points of sale, to carry and/or transport purchased items. Carry-out bags include restaurant delivery and restaurant take-out bags.
2.What counts as a “compliant” reusable bag?
Reusable bags made of cloth or other washable material, with stitched handles that are specifically designed and manufactured for multiple reuse. A bag is suitable for multiple reuse if it is machine washable or is made from a material that can be otherwise cleaned and disinfected.
3.What if I forget to bring a reusable bag?
All retail establishments shall make paper compliant carry‐out bags available to customers, for a fee of at least 5¢ per paper carry-out bag. Retailers can also offer compliant reusable bags for a fee or for free at their discretion.
4.What kinds of bags are allowed without fees?
  • “Produce bags” to package bulk items, such as fruit, vegetables, nuts, grains, candies, or small hardware items.
  • Bags used to wrap frozen foods, meat, or fish, whether packaged or not.
  • Bags used to contain or wrap flowers, potted plants, or other items where dampness may be an issue.
  • Bags used to contain unwrapped prepared foods or bakery goods.
  • Pharmacy prescription bags.
  • Bags used to contain live animals, such as fish or insects sold in pet stores.
  • Gift bags and “doggy bags”.
5.What about bags that come into direct contact with food?
If food is in direct contact with a paper bag (such as bagels, doughnuts, pastries), there is no charge for the paper bag.
6.What about restaurant delivery and take-out?
Restaurants shall charge 5¢ per order for paper bags required for delivery or takeout of that order, understanding that they often do not know how many bags are required until after the purchase is made and the customer is out of contact.

Doggy bags are exempt from the carry-out paper bag fee.

7.What counts as a “doggy bag”?
Doggy bags are those provided by eat-in restaurants when a customer takes home leftovers from the meal consumed in the restaurant.
8.Is there a fee for paper gift bags?
No, the ordinance exempts gift bags.
9.What if dampness issues make the use of paper bags impractical?
Products where dampness is an issue are exempted from the plastic bag prohibition.
10.Where does the 5 cent fee for paper carry-out bags go?
The fee is kept by the retailer.
11.Are seniors and public assistance recipients exempt from the paper carry-out bag fee?
Yes. Seniors (65 years or older) with proof of age are exempt. Persons using the New Jersey State Supplemental Nutritional Assistance Program, EBT, or New Jersey State Special Supplemental Nutrition Program for Women, Infants and Children are also exempt from carry-out bag fees.
12.What should I do if I have a large supply of non compliant carry-out bags already purchased for use in my store?
Contact Anthony Grenci, Code Enforcement Official, to apply for a temporary extension. [email protected]

You May Also Like

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *