Though enforcement of the Borough’s Single-use plastic ordinance was delayed by the COVID-19 pandemic the ordinance remains in effect, and a new enforcement date will be set by Borough Council as soon as permissible. The ordinance, approved by Borough Council in 2019, bans the distribution by commercial establishments of plastic bags and drinking straws within the Borough.

Paper bags are permitted as an alternative, but must consist of recycled content and be either recyclable or compostable, and establishments are required to charge and disclose a 10 cent fee on each bag provided to customers, to encourage customers to bring their own bag and avoid using unnecessary bags. The ordinance does not apply to product packaging or bags used to wrap raw food products, such as produce, cheese and meats.

Businesses with unique challenges may request an exemption by petitioning the Borough’s Sustainability Committee.

More information about the ordinance and exemption process can be found at west-chester.com/singleuse

About the author : John O'Brien