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Input from residents sought at Sept. 12 meeting about reusable bag ordinance

by Linda Hubbard Gulker on September 9, 2012

Twenty four cities in San Mateo and Santa Clara County, including Menlo Park, are considering adopting San Mateo County’s proposed Reusable Bag Ordinance. The ordinance would prohibit single-use plastic carry- out bags at all retail establishments and mandate a minimum charge of ten cents for every recycled paper bag or reusable bag provided by the retailer at checkout. Customers could avoid the charges by bringing their own reusable bag with them.

An Environmental Impact Report (EIR) is required in order to adopt the ordinance, and San Mateo County has released the Reusable Bag Ordinance Final EIR that includes Menlo Park in the analysis. The EIR can be viewed online or a hard copy is available at 701 Laurel Street at the Administration Building’s front desk.

The San Mateo County Planning Commission will hold a meeting on Wednesday, September 12, 2012 at 9:00 am in the Board of Supervisors’ Chambers located at 400 County Center, Redwood City, CA 94063 to provide feedback on the proposed ordinance before it is considered by the County Board of Supervisors. Written comments on the Final EIR will be accepted until September 10th and at the Planning Commission Meeting on September 12th.

The San Mateo County Board of Supervisors is tentatively scheduled to meet in October to certify the Final EIR and make their final decision on whether to adopt the Reusable Bag Ordinance. If approved by the County Board of Supervisors, Menlo Park City Council will consider adopting the ordinance in January 2013.

Please contact the County’s Environmental Health Services at (650) 372-6200 or envhealth@smcgov.org with any questions, comments, or concerns.

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