TREDYFFRIN, PA —Tredyffrin township supervisors Monday night 5 to 1 to approve an ordinance to ban single-use plastic bags in retail stores.
The goal is to reduce the use of single bags to protect local streams, rivers and waterways.
The ordinance will go into effect in six months.
The fines would be $100 for the first violation, $200 for the second violation, and $500 for each subsequent violation.
Supervisor Sharon Humble voted against the ban, noting plastic is used for recycling and there are other items that pollute green spaces.
Supervisor Murph Wysocki said this ordinance will protect the environment and natural resources.
Mark Freed, supervisor, said it’s much easier to bring your own bags.
“This is a step in the right direction,” Supervisor KS Bhasker said.
Resident George Snyder asked the board to put the bag ordinance out on a referendum to see if the public wants the ban plastic bags.
“You are taking away one of my rights,” he said of the ban. “Sometimes doing nothing is the best investment. That’s what you should do. Do nothing. Let us make our own decision.”
Arthur Zodrozny, a retired chemical engineer, said plastics are recyclable, but paper is not.
“We have bigger environmental problems than banning plastic bags,” he said.
About a dozen residents thanked the supervisors for supporting the ban.
Resident Liza Bernard said that she had experience in Cape Cod with banning plastic bags.
“The grocery stores give away bags to use,” she said.
There are numerous commercial establishments in the township that use single-use plastic bags.
Pennsylvania does not have a statewide ban on plastic bags, but several municipalities have issued bans.
They include Philadelphia and Pittsburgh; Eastown, Haverford and West Goshen townships, the borough of Narberth and West Chester.
In 2014, California was the first state in the nation to adopt a statewide ban.