Evanston aldermen tonight will consider a proposal from Alderman Coleen Burrus to impose a tax on the paper and plastic bags people carry home from the grocery store and other shops — in an effort to coerce shoppers into using reusable bags instead. Ponzi thinks the idea is half-baked.

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  1. Plastic Bags

    While I personally use Jewel bags as garbage bags as my form of recycling (rather than buying plastic bags to serve the same function)…and it's cheaper!

    I think that this bag tax is hardly expensive. Come on, 5 cents?

    Second, Mr. Ponzi, while you are quite good at criticizing and finding fault, how about exercising a little creativity and offering a solution or two?


  2. Mayor Daley got shot down

    Mayor Daley got shot down entirely when he proposed a tax on plastic-bottled water, rather than his idea being replaced with  a system of return deposit bottles/cans.    Now Evanston Now's cartoon  mocks attempts to reduce the single-use plastic bag and suggests that the idea would be a blow to low-income residents. 

    Massachusetts, Connecticut, Rhode Island, Vermont, Maine and New Hampshire all have 5 – cent return deposits on cans, plastic  and glass bottles, with a high level of participatiion.  They have reduced  trash collection costs, made roadside littering less prevalent and, additionally, provided a source of ready change for children who offer to return bottles and cans for their neighbors.  Many communities have a credit for those who bring their own recyclable bags (including their plastic bags that are being used again) to the grocery store; others charge for bags.  Nova Scotians (all income levels) recycle almost everything.  We can learn, and it is patronizing to suggest that residents — whether upper, middle or lower-income–  will not change habits to take advantage of the savings for themselves and the community.  A charge for bags (or  a credit for those who bring their own bags) is a modest start.  We should and could do much more in Illinois.

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