Ordinance Tabled for further study
March 20, 2012 - The City of Odessa, Texas had been planning to outlaw all single-use carry-out bags. However, the proposal was not adopted by City Council. The Odessa City Council discussed the proposed municipal ordinance to ban plastic bags at its regular meeting on February 28th. Council members decided to table the plastic bag ordinance.
I spoke with Michael Marrero, Asst. City Manager today and he told me, "We are working with neighboring cities to write up a new bag ban proposal." Mr. Marrero wrote the proposed ordinance for Odessa.
Neighboring Midland, Texas has been also considering a ban. The two cities are in the same combined statistical area and only 20 miles apart. A ban should be jointly written for both cities to stave off confusion with shoppers.
Odessa Litter Problem
Mr. Marrero stated, "The plastic bag ban proposal for Odessa came about because of the litter in the city. With a desert-like climate and no trees, plastic bags end up all over town, in our water reservoirs, lakes and rivers."
Odessa is located in Ector county. Most of the county is relatively flat with small areas slightly rolling. The area is known for its stark flat landscape. There are few naturally occurring trees with most of them being mesquite trees which more resemble large bushes.(1)
Plastic Industry Fighting Ban
The plastic bag industry, naturally is opposed to the ban. Hilex Poly's website, Bag the Ban, is encouraging citizens in Odessa and Midland to sign their online petition opposing a plastic bag ban or fee in either city. The site doesn't state what will be done with the signed petition, but informs you that you will be getting emails from the site if you sign up.
Cover Photo: Ector County Courthouse, Odessa, TX. Attribution: Georgia Guercio at en.wikipedia.org