Bucksport mulls plastic bag ban

BUCKSPORT — A Bucksport native wants the town to consider prohibiting retail use of plastic bags, similar to the bans passed in Blue Hill and Belfast.

“My major concern is the fact that plastic bags will break down after many, many years,” said resident Donna Smith. “They will not break down in a landfill, which is where most of them end up if they’re not flying around on the ground, choking animals to death.”

Also, Smith said, animals eat plastic bags, which “makes them feel full and then they starve to death.”

“It’s just the right thing to do,” Smith said. “If something is making your corner of the world not as nice as it could be, fix it.”

The proposal was discussed briefly during the July 26 Bucksport Town Council meeting. Smith did not attend. She said she didn’t know it would be on the agenda.

A regulatory review committee met before the Town Council meeting July 26. Councilor Paul Rabs said committee members recommended the town hold a nonbinding referendum on the proposed ban in November.

“Have the people in town say ‘yea’ or ‘nay’; get their opinion,” Rabs said.

“That needs to go before a council vote, though, correct?” Councilor Peter Stewart asked.

“Correct,” Rabs said.

Town Manager Sue Lessard said a vote on whether to hold the referendum would be on the next council meeting agenda.

Councilor Paul Gauvin asked, “So that would require all the businesses in town to not use plastic bags? So, they’d have to go to paper? Wow, that’s a lot of money.”

Jennifer Osborn

Jennifer Osborn

Reporter and columnist at The Ellsworth American
News Reporter Jennifer Osborn covers news and features on the Blue Hill Peninsula and Deer Isle-Stonington. She welcomes tips and story ideas. She also writes the Gone Shopping column. Email Jennifer with your suggestions at [email protected] or call 667-2576.

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