Gonzales, CA Adopts Reusable Bag Regulation

Gonzales, CA Adopts Reusable Bag Regulation

Gonzales, California, July 7, 2014 (PBBR) - The City Council of Gonzales passed an ordinance today that prohibits any retail establishment from giving a customer a single-use carryout bag for the purpose of transporting purchases away from the premises.

A retailer may make available for sale to a customer either a recycled content paper bag or a reusable bag for a minimum charge of twenty five cents.

All transactions between the retailer and customer for the purchase of a recycled content paper bag or a reusable bag must be documented and a record of that transaction must be kept for a period of one year.

The ordinance does not define "retail establishment". The wording simply states: "No retail establishment that sells perishable or non-perishable goods, including but not limited to, clothing, food, and personal items directly to the consumer shall provide a single-use carryout bag to a customer. . . "

A "reusable bag" is defined as a bag made of cloth or other machine washable fabric that has handles, or a durable plastic bag that has handles that is at least 4 mils thick and is specifically designed and manufactured for multiple reuse.

A “recycled content paper bag” is defined as a bag that contains a minimum of 40 percent post-consumer recycled content, is 100 percent recyclable, and has printed in a highly visible manner on the outside of the bag the words “reusable” and “recyclable,” the name and location of the manufacturer, and the percentage of post-consumer recycled content.

It is interesting to note that "non-profit charitable re-users (as defined by the ordinance) are not considered retail establishments.

The City Council adopted a ban on polystyrene food containers at the same meeting. Both ordinances will become effective January 1, 2015.

Learn more at the Gonzales city website.

Gonzales is located in Monterey County. Monterey County just banned plastic bags and other cities in the county that have banned plastic bags are the City of Monterey and Carmel-by-the-Sea.


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