[Editor's Note: The following information was provided by the Belmont City Manager, Greg Scoles, in his Weekly Update. To read the entire update, or to read past issues, click here.]
In November, the Belmont City Council introduced Belmont’s Reusable Bag Ordinance.
A public hearing and second reading of the ordinance is scheduled for the January 8, 2013 city council meeting. If adopted, the ordinance will become effective on April 22, 2013 (Earth Day).
The intent of the ordinance is to reduce the environmental impacts related to single-use carryout bags and to promote the use of reusable bags. The ordinance will regulate the distribution of paper and plastic single-use carryout bags by all retail establishments in Belmont, including those selling clothing, food, and personal items directly to the customer. It would not apply to restaurants or non-profit charitable reuse organizations.
Earlier this year, the County of San Mateo led a regional effort on this issue. The County Board of Supervisors adopted a Model Reusable Bag Ordinance in October and certified an Environmental Impact Report (EIR) for this project which covered 18 jurisdictions in San Mateo County (including Belmont) and six jurisdictions in Santa Clara County.
Both Belmont and the County of San Mateo will be conducting outreach to retail businesses in advance of the effective date of the ordinance.