HB 338: Repealing Ban on Plastic Bag Bans — 2020
ICL's position: Support
Current Bill Status: House Committee
Issue Areas: Climate Change
In 2016, the Idaho Legislature passed a bill that prohibited cities and counties from limiting or banning the use of plastic bags, cups, or containers.
While no municipality actually restricted, or charged a fee for, the use of plastic bags at grocery stores, some legislators were concerned that we could start seeing these ordinances. The bill passed and was signed into law by Gov. Otter.
House Bill 338, introduced this year by House Minority Leader Rep. Ilana Rubel (D-Boise), would repeal the 2016 bill and reestablish local decision-making over plastic bags. Because the bill was introduced as a “personal bill,” it’s unclear whether the bill will ever be scheduled for a hearing in the House Business Committee, chaired by Rep. Sage Dixon (R-Ponderay).
Americans dispose of more than 100 billion plastic bags a year. The litter and fossil fuel burden associated with these non-biodegradable products have led some states, cities and countries to implement bag bans.
There’s a lot of support for “local control” in the Idaho Legislature. Unfortunately, that support seems to wane when legislators disagree with decisions made at the local level.