Monday, January 14, 2013

2013 General Assembly update

The General Assembly's 2013 session opened last Wednesday. Three bills addressing plastic bag litter are on the agenda:

- SB970 (Sen. Adam Ebbin, Arlington/Alexandria) would apply a 5-cent fee to plastic and paper bags provided at checkout. This bill mirrors the DC program and is estimated to generate $26 million annually, directed to the Water Quality Improvement Fund. The bill has been referred to the Committee on Finance; the subcommittee will be hearing testimony Wednesday, January 16 at 9 am.

- HB1381 (Del. Joe Morrissey, Richmond) would apply a 5-cent fee to disposable plastic and paper bags given at checkout at grocery stores, convenience stores, and drug stores. [It's my understanding that this has been amended to include paper bags, as in DC and Montgomery County, Maryland.] It has been referred to the Committee on Finance.

- HB1591 (Del. Onzlee Ware, Roanoke) would ban plastic bags. It has been referred to the Committee on Agriculture, Chesapeake, and Natural Resources.