An Act To Eliminate Single-use Plastic Carry-out Bags
Sec. 1. 38 MRSA §1605, as repealed and replaced by PL 1991, c. 475, §1, is repealed.
Sec. 2. 38 MRSA §1611 is enacted to read:
§ 1611. Plastic bag reduction
(1) Is 100% recyclable; and
(2) Contains at least 20% post-consumer recycled material if it has a capacity to hold at least 8 pounds,
(1) Is designed and manufactured to withstand a minimum of 75 repeated uses;
(2) Is machine washable or made from a material that can be cleaned and disinfected regularly;
(3) If made from plastic is at least 4 mils thick; and
(4) Has the capability of carrying a minimum of 18 pounds.
(1) Bags provided by a pharmacy to a customer for transporting a prescription medication away from the store;
(2) Bags without handles used to protect items from being damaged or from damaging or contaminating other purchased items placed in a recycled paper bag or a reusable bag;
(3) Bags used by customers inside a retail establishment to package loose items, such as fruits, vegetables, nuts, coffee, grains, bakery goods, candy, greeting cards or small hardware items; to contain or wrap frozen foods, meats or fish; or to contain or wrap flowers or potted plants;
(4) Laundry, dry cleaning or garment bags, including bags provided by a hotel to guests to contain wet or dirty clothing or bags provided to protect large garments like suits, jackets or dresses;
(5) Newspaper bags;
(6) Bags sold in packages containing multiple bags intended to contain garbage, pet waste or yard waste;
(7) Bags used to contain live animals, such as fish or insects sold in pet stores;
(8) Bags used for vehicle tires;
(9) Bags used to transport chemical pesticides, drain cleaning chemicals or other caustic chemicals sold at a retail establishment;
(10) Bags used by a hunger relief organization such as a food pantry or soup kitchen to distribute food directly to the consumer at no charge;
(11) Bags that customers bring to the retail establishment for their own use or for carrying away from the retail establishment goods that are not placed in a bag provided by the retail establishment.
(1) Locates inside the retail establishment or within 20 feet of the main entrance to the retail establishment a receptacle for collecting any used single-use carry-out bags made of plastic; and
(2) Ensures that single-use carry-out bags made of plastic that are collected by the retail establishment are recycled or delivered to a person engaged in recycling plastics.
(1) All amounts collected pursuant to this paragraph are retained by the retail establishment and may be used for any lawful purpose.
(2) A retail establishment may not rebate or otherwise reimburse a customer any portion of the fee charged pursuant to this paragraph.
(1) Stores at which less than 2% of retail sales are attributed to the sale of food and that have less than 10,000 square feet of retail area;
(2) Restaurants; or
(3) Hunger relief organizations engaged in distributing food directly to consumers at no charge.
A retail establishment exempt from charging a fee under this paragraph may charge a fee for a recycled paper bag or a reusable bag made of plastic.