Caitlin Tan Published

Bill To Restrict W.Va. Municipalities From Banning Plastics, Etc. Passes House

Plastic bags in a grocery cart.

The West Virginia House of Delegates passed a bill Tuesday that would limit local governments from banning or regulating certain plastics and to-go containers.

House Bill 2500 would disallow municipalities from banning “auxiliary containers,” which the bill defines as “ a bag, cup, bottle, or other packaging, whether reusable or single-use” that is used in the food or retail industries. Examples include plastic grocery bags, to-go food containers and plastic silverware.

Local governments would not be able to regulate, prohibit or impose a fee or tax to use these items.

Delegate Brandon Steele, R-Raleigh County, is one of the sponsors of the bill. He answered questions from Delegate Mike Pushkin, D-Kanawha County, about what would be banned.

“It would be like when the city of San Francisco banned the use of plastic straws,” Steele said.

Pushkin asked Steele if there were any similar examples in West Virginia.

“It’s been discussed in several municipalities, but it hasn’t happened,” Steele said.

House Bill 2500 was passed 79 to 19 and will move onto the Senate.