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Proposition 65

Seeks to direct revenue from carryout bag sales to environmental fund

Carol Ozemhoya & Manny Otiko | OW Contributors | 10/6/2016, midnight
Proposition 65 is called the Dedication of Revenue from Disposable Bag Sales to Wildlife Conservation Fund Initiative and is designed ...

Proposition 65 is called the Dedication of Revenue from Disposable Bag Sales to Wildlife Conservation Fund Initiative and is designed to require all monies that come from the sale of carryout bags from grocery or other retail locations to go to a special fund managed by the Wildlife Conservation Board.

It’s related to State Bill 270, which banned the use of plastic bags in 2014.

If passed, the measure will put a halt to a deal made by legislators and lobbyists, which allows grocery stores to keep plastic bag fee revenue as profits. It is expected to generate tens of millions of dollars for environmental projects.

Prop. 65 is one of two measure on the ballot that deals with the use and sale of plastic bags; the other is Prop.67.

This propositon requires that state-mandated sale of carryout bags (specifically paper bags) be distributed three ways: (1) To cover costs associated with complying with Proposition 67.

(2) To cover the costs of providing the recycled paper or reusable bags.

(3) To provide educational materials encouraging the use of reusable bags.

If both are approved, but Proposition 67 receives more “yes” votes, this provision would supersede Proposition 65’s allocation provision.

Thomas Hudson, executive director of the California Taxpayer Protections Committee, is a supporter of Prop. 65, as is Deborah Howard, executive director of the California Senior Advocates League.

They say the proposition would put a halt to a deal made by legislators and lobbyists, which allows grocery stores to keep plastic bag fee revenue as profits. But Prop. 67 that SB 270 be repealed requires that the revenue from the bag sales be dedicated to environmental projects that receive state aid.

Howard and Hudson say, “Grocery stores stand to gain $300 million in added profits each and every year unless Californians vote yes on Proposition 65.

The only person on record against Proposition 65 is Mark Murray, executive director of Californians Against Waste. He says the measure would distract from phasing out the use of plastic bags by retailers altogether.

All 65 would do is direct funding from the sale of paper bags (an option under the plastic bag ban) to a new state fund. The money for this fund is a drop in the bucket and will shrink over time as people adjust to bringing reusable bags.

Basically…

A “yes” vote on Prop. 65 means: If state law (1) prohibits giving customers certain carryout bags for free and (2) requires a charge for other types of carryout bags, the resulting revenue would be deposited in a new state fund to support certain environmental programs.

A “no” vote on this measure means: If charges on carryout bags are required by a state law, that law does not direct the use of the resulting revenue toward the Wildlife Fund.