Plastic bag ban passes first Northampton City Council vote

22News spoke with business owners, and found out what it will take for this to take effect.

NORTHAMPTON, Mass. (WWLP)- Northampton City council has taken the first step to ban plastic bags in the city’s  supermarkets.

Northampton’s City Council wants to ban the use of plastic bags at the checkout lines in retail stores and supermarkets.

The city requires two city council votes for a proposed ordinance.  If the ban passes, and the mayor signs it, the Board of Health will be responsible for regulating it.

Most of the local stores have already gotten rid of plastic bags and have implemented other options. But it’s some of the chain stores that seem to have a problem.
Northampton City council Vice President Jesse Adams said the Stop & Shop sent a letter of concern, but the city council believes everyone would benefit. “It’s for waste reduction, and environmental protection. These bags are petroleum based and they often end up as litter,” Adams said.

Serio’s supermarket manager, Jamie Golec told 22News  they got rid of plastic bags at the checkout in 2008, and they used to use a quarter million plastic bags.  “People are in the habit of doing it. It’s whats normal it’s just an everyday thing for them you know If you take a second to think “Do I really need this?” The chances are you don’t,” Golec said.

A second plastic bag ban vote takes place April 7th.  If it gets final approval, the ban would go into affect on January first of 2016.

Businesses that could be hurt by the ban, would be eligible for up to three six month deferments.  There are bills in the “state legislature” that could implement the same type of ban.


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