BYOGreenwich: Reusable Checkout Bag Ordinance Costs Zero if People Bring Their Own Bag!

Open letter to the RTM submitted by Anne Ogilvy on behalf of BYOGreenwich. The Reusable Checkout Bag Ordinance is on the RTM’s March 12 call.

As you know plastic pollution reduction is a very dynamic issue gaining momentum and growing support to address this global crisis on a daily basis statewide, across the country and the world.

You can see in the picture above from our recent community beach clean up at Tod’s Point with 10 other local non-profits together with 150 residents we cleaned up close to 2 tons of garbage in 2 hours. Plastic pollution is a Greenwich issue too.

The Reusable Checkout Bag Ordinance is written to support the reduction of plastic pollution, ward off our temptations to just substitute paper in its place, protect our local businesses and create a new vision of a thriving competitive 21st century economy that will attract families to Greenwich and further stimulate our economy.

From the research BYOGreenwich has done, over the year past year, paper bags are not free, retailers pay between 10¢ – 20¢ per bag.

The proposed 23¢ is intended to ensure consumers shopping in Greenwich receive quality bags that properly represent Greenwich retailing and will help our stores compete with comparable retail markets, like Westport and Rye.

Let us offer the best, progressive, healthiest and the cleanest retail experience. Marketing studies are showing that is what people are now making purchasing decisions based on.

We need to compete and win retail consumers – cheap, environmentally toxic plastic bags is not the way to do it!

The RCB Ordinance wants to ensure that businesses will be able to cover their costs without posing an unnecessary burden on the consumer.

Members of the BYOGreenwich committee attended many of the different Plan of Conservation and Development workshops and heard residents are ready for a new approach.

This Ordinance is intended to be pro-business and pro-resident, pro-Greenwich. This ordinance does not add any additional costs to the town budget, if anything it is positioned to potentially save the town money.

Remember, this will cost zero if people bring their own bag!

After more than 3,000 hours of research and multiple interviews with towns across the country about their plastic bag ordinances, the RCB Ordinance was developed through lessons learned.

This ordinance is science based, practical and bi-partisan. This makes our town’s ordinance more likely to succeed, look like no one else’s and makes it more defensible against loopholes and challenges.

The RCB initiative was voted unanimously in favor of by the Greenwich Board of Selectmen July 2017.

The RCB Ordinance is consistent with Sustainable CT and with the sustainable Greenwich town initiative that was adopted by the Board of Selectmen in 2017.

Here is the newest news from NYC, their newest model looks like ours and not like the tax previous model Cuomo voted down last year.