The group “Less Plastics Please” and I battled a bit over the BAG TAX (or bag fee…as if there is a difference) that will soon hit Howard County Residents (in October of 2020). I hated the idea of a tax on residents that was about making the county money and not really about seriously reducing the amount of plastic bags in our community.

But now…Less Plastic Please and I are on the same page as they are advocating for HB209/SB313 which would BAN plastic bags at point of sale in Maryland.

Here is a post from Less Plastics Please from February 19th:

Click image to see post on Facebook

Now that Less Plastic Please is on the side of banning the product instead of taxing the product…I am 100% on board.

The Annapolis Patch posted the following article on the topic “Plastic Carryout Bags Would Be Banned Under Bill Proposed In MD“. It is noted in the article that “Similar bills failed to pass in 2015 and 2016″…let us hope it does not fail this time around.

Back when the plastic bag tax / fee was passed by Howard County Council…I got dissed a bit for providing real world information from a neighboring jurisdiction…check it out:

Now I did not make up the data I shared with the Howard County Council…I just went online to the Montgomery County data portal and provided the DATA that MoCo shares with the public:

Anyone else see a 40+% drop in the numbers in that chart above?  Again…not MY data…data from Montgomery County Government.

Look…yes I am a local blogger…and yes I am a resident of this county. I have the right to an opinion and should not be dismissed when sharing real world information on a topic. That is 100% what I was in the video above.

I have had time to chill out and let it go (a bit)…I like Councilmember Jones. He and I agree on more things than we disagree on…so I let this issue go when the bag tax / fee was finally approved (the same way I let it go when some of my favorites in Annapolis passed it at that level). My hope is that in the future the fact that I am a blogger is not an issue discussed…but the fact that I am a resident of this county providing information is taken seriously.

I am still at the same point I was all of last year…100% in favor of a ban…I just hope it passes in Annapolis and does not go the way it did in the past…failing because there is no way for jurisdictions to make money off of it. I will be watching who votes yes and who votes no.

I am not a fan of the part of the bill that states “requiring a store to charge, collect, and retain a certain amount of money (10 cents) for durable carryout bags the store provides to a customer”…but at least this bill is more about really reducing plastics than the tax / fee than Howard County and other jurisdictions have passed. Maybe they (the General Assembly) will fix that part with an amendment…because it is not like they (the stores) don’t already charge us for bags at checkout. Maybe not directly…but in the final price of products…the stores already do charge us at checkout.

If you agree…write / email your representative and ask them to pass HB209 and SB313.

Scott E