on Plastic & Polystyrene
As many of you most likely know, Home Rule and Preemption are hot topics for municipalities in our state. While preemption encroaches on many areas, we are specifically focusing on the one close to our hearts. We have an opportunity to reverse plastic and polystyrene preemption with House Bill 6043 and Senate Bill 182.
The Town of Palm Beach has most recently made some steps, following Coral Gables and Gainesville. Other Florida municipalities (especially coastal ones) need to follow in Palm Beach’s footsteps (see Recent Backstory below) and enact a resolution strongly encouraging the state legislature to approve House Bill 6043 and Senate Bill 182. in repealing the preemption of local laws in regards to single use plastic and polystyrene materials.
Email/Tweet/Write and Rally
We have less than 60 days (from the start of the FL legislative session on 1/14/20) to reverse preemption of single-use plastic bags and polystyrene in Florida ! We should be able to regulate these items at the local level.
We Need To Support These Bills By:
Calling on your local commissioners to draft a resolution like T of PB
(see sample below)
Contact Governor DeSantis to support these bills
Remember, he vetoed the proposed preemption on straws in the 2019 session! (see sample and contact info. below)
Write your local newspaper (see sample below)
Email the committee members of the House and Senate
(see samples and contact info below - there are six committees!)
See below for sample text and contact information for all of these initiatives.
The Recent Backstory
On June 11, 2019, the Town of Palm Beach Town Council adopted Ordinance No. 24-2019, to prohibit the use of expanded polystyrene containers and single-use carry out plastic bags, within the corporate limits of their town.
In the weeks following the Town Council approval of the ordinance, the town received a letter from the Florida Retail Federation and Florida Restaurant & Lodging Association requesting the Town to repeal the Ordinance based upon the regulation of plastic bags and polystyrene under Florida Statutes, Ch. 403.7033 and Ch. 500.90. (a similar letter was sent to multiple municipalities in our state who were also attempting to regulate single use plastic.) At the August 14, 2019 Town Council meeting, Emergency Ordinance No. 37-2019 was requested to repeal the previously approved ban, in order to comply with the preemptive state statute.
While trying to obey the law but also make it known that they did not agree, the Town of Palm Beach adopted Resolution 122-2019 at their October 10, 2019 meeting, which strongly encourages the State Legislature to approve Senate Bill 182 (and now House Bill 6043), to remove preemption, related to single-use plastic bags and polystyrene materials.
Some Facts and What You Can Do NOW to Help
How plastic preemption began in Florida
In 2008 the FL Legislature put preemption in place after much concern regarding plastic bags in the environment. A two year study was conducted to assess the impacts and the following report was presented, https://www.khlaw.com/Files/26980_Florida_Retail-Bag-Report_01Feb10.pdf at which time the legislature was to make a decision on whether or not to act. This report overwhelmingly showed the detrimental effect of single-use plastic in our coastal environment.
No action has been taken in 10 years!