Evanston Alderman Coleen Burrus, 9th Ward, has revived her proposal to tax shopping bags — but the new plan targets all disposable bags, not just plastic ones.
The revised plan, to be considered by the City Council Monday night, also cuts the proposed tax from 25-cents to five-cents per bag. And it specifies that the money raised should be used to fund programs at the city’s Ecology Center, mostly to promote the use of reusable shopping bags.
Store owners who failed to collect the tax could lose their city operating licenses and face a $200-a-day fine.
The ordinance would exempt a wide array of bags — including those used to contain bulk products, wrap frozen foods, plants, prepared foods and newspapers.
The draft ordinance claims that its purpose is to discourage use of disposable carryout bags, which, it says, have significant adverse impacts on the environment and frequently become litter and a source of visual blight.
The staff memo supporting the ordinance did not provide an estimate of how many bags would be subject to the tax or how much money the ordinance might raise.
Burrus withdrew the previous version of the ordinance last September after it appeared to face substantial opposition from other aldermen.
The proposed bag ordinance