DALLAS (CBSDFW.COM) – Dallas’ plastic bag fee ordinance may violate state law, according to an attorney general’s opinion.
This could lead to the city outright banning single-use plastic bags.
Dallas Councilman Dwaine Caraway said, “If we’re pushed, we’ll drop the fee and institute the full ban.”
Caraway first proposed banning plastic bags more than a year ago. He said the council “compromised” with retailers by instead voting for a 5-cent per bag ordinance. It’s set to go into effect at the beginning of next year.
Texas Attorney General Greg Abbott said whether a plastic bag ban violates state law comes down to intent. If a city passes a ban “for solid waste management purposes, it could violate state law, according to Abbott’s opinion.
Caraway said single-use plastic bags have become a major litter issue and banning the bags is in the interested of public health and welfare.
Gary Huddleston with the Texas Retailers Association, said the Attorney General’s opinion that the 5-cent fee conflicts with state law is “good news for customers in the City of Dallas who are facing paying a fee for a paper or plastic bag at a retail store.”
Huddleston added he hopes the city council will now ”re-evaluate” its position on an outright ban.
Abbott’s issued opinion is not legally binding. A court will ultimately have to decided intent.
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