An attempt to overturn a state law banning single-use plastic bags will appear on the November 2016 ballot, Secretary of State Alex Padilla announced late Tuesday.
Opponents of the state law SB 270 needed to obtain 504,760 valid signatures from registered votes to qualify the referendum for the ballot.
Provisions of the controversial law, which was to go into effect July 1, will be suspended until after votes are cast in the November 2016 election.
“SB 270 was never a bill about the environment. It was a backroom deal between the California Grocers Association and their union friends to scam consumers out of billions of dollars in bag fees, all under the guise of environmentalism, said Lee Califf, the executive director of the American Progressive Bag Alliance, which organized the “Bag the Ban” signature-gathering drive.
“California voters will now have a chance to vote down a terrible law that if implemented, would kill 2,000 local manufacturing jobs and funnel obscene profits to big grocers without any money going to a public purpose or environmental initiative.”
The American Progressive Bag Alliance represents the nation’s plastic bag manufacturers and the recycling industry.
Linda Escalante, policy advocate for the Natural Resources Defense Council called the referendum “nothing more than a greedy attempt by out-of- state plastic bag makers to mislead California’s voters for their own gain.
“Single-use plastic bags litter our neighborhoods and harm our rivers, lakes, coast, ocean and wildlife,” Escalante said.
SB 270, signed into law by Gov. Jerry Brown on Sept. 30, would ban grocery stores and pharmacies from making single-use plastic bags available. The law would also provide up to $2 million in competitive loans to businesses transitioning to manufacturing reusable bags.
— City News Service
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