Plastic bag ban proposal trashed by Falher council

Richard Froese
South Peace News

A proposed bylaw to ban single-use plastic shopping checkout bags in Falher has been scrapped – for now.
At its regular meeting March 7, Falher town council received the bylaw for information.
“Get rid of it [the bylaw],” Councillor Robert Lauze said.
Mayor Donna Buchin- ski says the bylaw is not entirely dead.
“We don’t want to pursue it at this time,” she said.
“It’s something we can bring back.”
CAO James Bell confirmed a bylaw may still return in the future.
Buchinski noted a growing number of municipalities across Canada have considered or have already adopted bylaws to ban single-use plastic shopping checkout bags to protect the environment.
She added many stores have encouraged shoppers to bring their own reusable checkout bags and are charging for plastic bags.
However, when council suggested the idea previously, it drew some concern.
“We had some opposition,” Buchinski said.
The bylaw received first reading in March 2020, Bell said.
However, further readings were delayed when Alberta Health Services banned customers’ reusable shopping bags when the COVID-19 pandemic started in mid-March 2020.
COVID-19 health restrictions in Alberta were dropped March 1.
Bell said the proposed bylaw was requested by the Smoky River Regional Waste Commission.
“A large number of plastic bags are being deposited in the landfill and find their way to neighbouring agricultural lands, leaving local farmers to deal with the issue and/or the waste commission in some cases paying for the cleanup of the bags,” Bell said at the June 9, 2021 meeting.
The proposed bylaw would not apply to plastic bags or plastic coverings to package loose fruit or vegetables, loose hardware such as nails and bolts, plastic used to wrap prepared foods for baked goods and flowers, plastic used to contain prescription drugs received from a pharmacy and plastic use to protect or contain professional laundering, dry cleaning.
Council members also did not support the proposed bylaw after council tabled third reading at its regular meeting June 9, 2021.

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