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'Paper or plastic?' Neither after next Jan. 1

Original post made on Feb 22, 2012

Starting next Jan. 1, shoppers in Pleasanton will have to use their own bags for groceries and other merchandise or pay for ones stores will have to provide.

Read the full story here Web Link posted Wednesday, February 22, 2012, 7:54 AM

Comments (81)

Posted by SteveP, a resident of Parkside
on Feb 22, 2012 at 8:18 am

SteveP is a registered user.

"This is really great, something I've been waiting for," said Mayor Jennifer Hosterman. "Everyone I've talked to is excited."
She obviously needs to get out more and stop listening to her small circle of bohemian friends. Of all the things for the city to concern itself with, this should be the last thing they meddle in. I can't imagine our new low income residents will look upon this favorably...let's hope they are registered to vote.

Posted by curious, a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Feb 22, 2012 at 8:23 am

Yes, I'd have to agree that given all the other issues the City is dealing with, this should be low on the Mayor's priority list!!

Posted by not yet eco parent, a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Feb 22, 2012 at 8:26 am

I think we're totally over-regulated in CA, but this one I do like.

I have tons of reusable bags that I always mean to bring into groceries etc., but forget and always feel guilty about the plastic bags. This will help me remember, and once it's a habit, it will be easy + will probably save thousands of bags polluting the environment from me alone. The children will learn to bring the reusable bags and so on.

I think this is great.

Posted by over regulated, a resident of Alisal Elementary School
on Feb 22, 2012 at 8:39 am

So now I have to buy garbage bags instead of reuseing my grocery bags. And I recycle all thet bags I don't use for garbage. If I want to use reusable bags, I will. Keep your nose out of my life! Gov't should provide for the general safety and security of the society it is elected by. This doesn't fit that description!

Posted by My 2 cents, a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Feb 22, 2012 at 8:40 am

I think that is great. In Europe you have to pay for your own bags if you don't bring your own. It is a great way to force people to recycle - we learned quickly because it got expensive to go shopping in Europe without bringing our own bags.

Posted by My 2 cents, a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Feb 22, 2012 at 8:46 am

"So now I have to buy garbage bags instead of reuseing my grocery bags."

That is not how I understand this. If you go to the store and request that they give you bags, they will charge you, but if you bring your own bags (paper, plastic or the reusable cloth ones), you will not be charged.

Posted by Member From Foothill Rd, a resident of Foothill Place
on Feb 22, 2012 at 8:51 am

I all ready bring my own bags, but occasionally I forget. In those cases, at Safeway, I use one of the recycled bags that are offered in the front area of the store. I would assume that other retailers might also start a recycling area where extra "free" bags can be obtained.

Posted by POed in P-Town, a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Feb 22, 2012 at 8:52 am

Interestingly enough their was a letter to a columnist,submitted by a registered nusre, to The Mercury Noose today. She pointed out how unsanitary reused bags are, unless they are properly washed after each use, and how they contaminate the food of all customers.

This is yet act of buffoonery foisted upon us by The Stooges and Matt Campbell. Surprisingly, in this case Cindy McGovern joined the 4 loons on the Council in this vote.

This is another incident that shows us the importance of having another candidate run for Mayor, so we don't wind up replacing the current Stooge with one of the other two Stooges. Pleasanton votes really need to get serious about electing a city council that is not populated by left-wing loons and/or environmental loons. These loons are dedicated to taking away our freedoms and dictating every aspect of our lives.

Posted by Ace, a resident of Dublin
on Feb 22, 2012 at 8:58 am

So what happens when someone is shopping at the mall, will BMOB also apply? That's just crazy. I can see theft becoming a problem then.

Posted by Tango, a resident of Vineyard Avenue
on Feb 22, 2012 at 9:00 am

We recycle all our bags. The paper bags we use to put our news papers in, they the go to the Lions Club bin. The plastic bags line our waste paper baskets and are recycled when they aren't usable anymore. All that can't be used go to the recycle station at the dump. I am not so worried about the paper bags , they will decompose. Why did we not have a say in the law that will affect all of us? I not sure I like the way our PUBLIC SERVANTS make OUR laws.

Posted by Member, a resident of Amador Valley High School
on Feb 22, 2012 at 9:16 am

We don't need politicians telling us what to do about shopping bags. This is just another example of elitist politicians with left wing "green" views imposing their personal views on others where that makes life for others more expensive, more inconvenient, etc. Even for those bags that don't get brought back voluntarily, they probably constitute one-millionth of one percent of trash. What's next? Will they require us to buy a Prius? Or maybe a mandate to buy health insurance? Oh, I forgot, we already have that from Obamacare. I will vote against those on the Council who voted for this.

Posted by Scrappy, a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Feb 22, 2012 at 9:22 am

Maybe I should start shopping in Dublin come Jan 2013....

"The ordinance requires that on Jan. 1, 2013, no Pleasanton retailer can provide plastic or paper bags to customers free of charge"

So this new applies to retailers in downtown? Are they expecting P-Town browsers and visitors to bring their own bags while strolling our nice downtown? The first thing visitors will do after hearing that they have to pay for the bags is TO NOT BUY, isn't it?

Posted by TAK, a resident of Oak Hill
on Feb 22, 2012 at 9:36 am

Looks like I'll be doing my shopping north of I580 and on-line.

I'll keep dining in Pleasanton because our illustrious city council hasn't yet voted to require us to bring our own plates.

Posted by Member, a resident of Bonde Ranch
on Feb 22, 2012 at 9:55 am

Since when did Pleasanton become Berkeley? If I wanted to live in liberal land Berkeley I would do so. This makes me so angry and I am a quiet one who never complains. I also will shop outside of Pleasanton where they obviously value our business and won't make stupid laws like this. This could be a serious loss of tax revenue if many people choose to shop elsewhere. Reusing bags for food is really unsanitary. Who would intentionally make a law that could make people sick? I supposed next they won't allow us to have free produce/meat bags either without paying for them. Just imagine your meat package leaking all over your other food. This is a horrible decision and will definitely affect my voting decisions.

Posted by Fair is Fair, a resident of Mission Park
on Feb 22, 2012 at 10:07 am

To all of you who are complaining about this and saying the govt has bigger things to worry about, please try to expand your narrow mindedness and everything is either black or white logic. The govt at every level can do several things at once (wow!), one of them being trying to improve our standard of living and the environment around us. I hate what plastic bags do to our environment, not to mention the useless plastic packaging we have on everything nowadays. It ain't that hard to change, people. You'll get used to using reusable bags at the grocery store... just like how we got used to picking up after our dogs, not smoking indoors in restaurants and at our desks at work, and driving with our seatbelts on. The sky didn't fall after these regulations became effective and the government didn't all of a sudden run our lives... and from what I see, our lives are better for it - I don't have to breath in crappy smoke, seatbelts save lives and I don't step in dog sh*t anymore.

I imagine from these posts that most of the complainers are the people who claim to be right wing, conservative, tea partiers... well here's change... it may not be the change you're looking for (it never is)... and you know what... I like it.

Posted by Sherm, a resident of Canyon Oaks
on Feb 22, 2012 at 10:29 am

They've been doing exactly this kind of thing in Europe for a long time, and we know what's going on over there. All socialism. All austerity. All tyranny. As to the unsanitary bags, need I remind anybody that Europe was the seat of bubonic plague? If I have to drive 100 miles to escape this nonsense I will, and I'll get perverse satisfaction in my Hummer polluting our Berzerkley hippy mayor's air while I'm making the drive.

This is obviously an attempt to serve the earth. We should not serve the earth but husband it, treating it as a dutiful wife. My wife would never attempt to impose environmental penalties on me.

Posted by Reuses All Bags, a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Feb 22, 2012 at 10:32 am

I agree with others - I will now have to buy plastic bags (either at check out or in the store) because I reuse the plastic bags for diapers, cat litter, etc. And to the reader who wondered when P-town became Berkeley - Mayor Hosterman has been trying to turn it into Berkeley since her first day in office. No one should be surprised they didn't see this coming. I will just switch to the paper bags...which I put in my reusable ones, because of sanitary issues. AMERICA IS OVER REGULATED - even Europe agrees (see last week's Economist)

Posted by One more expense, a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Feb 22, 2012 at 10:42 am

I have one question: ever since the Garbage Company started having us separate our garbage, adding one more (blue) bin to the 2 we already had, and charging us more because according to them there would be one more driver, even though we were now paying to do their job and further separate the garbage for them, one of the requirements was that all the vegetables scraps were to be placed in a PAPER bag as they got collected, which later would go to the green can along with the garden waste. So now that we won't have paper bags from the grocery stores anymore, are we supposed to PURCHASE paper bags to satisfy the garbage company? If that is the case I will say screw it and no longer separate the food scraps that go in the green can. It's like telling me to pay more and more and more to do the Garbage service's job.

I had it!

Posted by Lola h, a resident of Danbury Park
on Feb 22, 2012 at 10:51 am

I think it is a grate Idea with one exception. The customer should be given a choice if getting a free bag when buying some foods that will contaminate other foods and your bags when put into the same bags you bring,such as chicken and meats that can and do leak. We pay enough for our health today without adding grocery bags to say safe from cross contamination

Posted by Kim, a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Feb 22, 2012 at 11:05 am

Looking forward to much more shopping in Livermore, Dublin and San Ramon.

Posted by Hate meddlers !, a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Feb 22, 2012 at 11:29 am

My many newspapers fit perfectly into a brown paper bag, all recycled. Get OUT of our lives !! I ALREADAY bring my own, part of the time, but I do want some brown bags for my newspapers.

Posted by Fair is Fair, a resident of Mission Park
on Feb 22, 2012 at 11:31 am

Hey "Sherm" of Canyon Oaks... I didn't know the bubonic plague happened because Europe didn't use plastic bags. I learn something new every day!

And "Reuses All Bags", I'm in the same boat as you. I re-use all my plastic bags if they don't already come with a rip or hole in it. So, now I will either only buy the bags that I need (which will cut down on the massive stockpile of bags I have in my garage) or find other ways such as using bio-degradable bags or newspaper to line my small garbage cans in the house.

Being a believer in business and innovation, decisions like these give birth to new ideas and products to replace old, tired, wasteful things like plastic shopping bags. Don't be afraid of change, it's not always bad.

Posted by Hate meddlers !, a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Feb 22, 2012 at 11:34 am

Fair si Fair...... oh, we'll be stepping in dog shxx, we won't have any plastic bags for picking up shxx !!

Posted by Not just Pleasanton, a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Feb 22, 2012 at 11:41 am

A very important detail that the story failed to mention is that this is already an approved *Alameda County* ordinance that was passed in January. According to the "plastic bag ban" ordinance, "Cities can decide they do not want to participate in Alameda County's specific plan by March 2, 2012, but state law will still require them to recycle specific materials. The plan expands to mandatory composting in July 2014".

Pleasanton's city council vote was to confirm that Pleasanton was not going to opt out of the recommended ordinance.

Honestly, reading the comments posted above, it sounds like a bunch of self-centered whiners looking for any reason to sabotage efforts to reduce unnecessary waste. As for the "re-usable bags are unsanitary" statements, even when I bring my re-usable bags to the store and currently receive credit for bringing them, the checkers/baggers always offer to put meats in a plastic bag. And plastic bags will remain next to the fruits, vegetables, and meat products in the stores; those won't go away, and are often made of biodegradable plastic anyway... so I don't see where the giant alarm is coming from.

Oh, I know: someone is now telling you to help the planet out since asking you nicely for years has had no effect on habits.

p.s. Also, the retailers (yay, Help Local Businesses!) now get compensated for the bags that they have to pay for. A win-win.

Posted by AnnaS, a resident of Foothill High School
on Feb 22, 2012 at 1:12 pm

There are always different ways of solving problems: smart ones - which eventually solve a problem, not very smart ones - which make solving a problem more difficult, not at all smart ones - which do not solve a problem, and, of course, the California government's ways - which waste peoples' money, don't solve a current problem and create a new ones.
Pleasanton could implement the Whole Food's practice encouraging residents to bring their bags from home. Pleasanton, as a family-friendly place (yet), could install funny looking recycling bins near stores and schools to attract kids to recycling. But, City consul of Pleasanton, as well as today's federal and California's state, is not familiar with a concept of encouraging. All they know is "force", "ban", "regulate", "tax".
I'm wondering what next will be banned in Pleasanton - dogs or children?

Posted by Hmmm, a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Feb 22, 2012 at 1:19 pm

Hopefully dogs. Kids are cool.

Posted by Mom, a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Feb 22, 2012 at 2:29 pm

Thank you Anna. I think your comment sums it up very well.

This sounds like a profit maker for the stores. It used to be that they paid you for bringing your own bag. Now we have to pay them to use their bags for the items we have are buying from them?

I bring my own bags but I find this annoying

Posted by Bill, a resident of Downtown
on Feb 22, 2012 at 2:32 pm

Once the 75 acres of low rent housing are built, how will they get their beer and cigarettes home.

Posted by Sherm, a resident of Canyon Oaks
on Feb 22, 2012 at 2:38 pm

Where there's smoke there's fire. When grocery prices go up, you can rest assured that someone is behind it. I think its pretty obvious whose behind this. The grocers can't make money because they're being strongarmed by the corrupt union fatcats. So the grocers petition the pols to institute this enforcement to raise the prices so that grocers can pay unions. I doubt that Walmart will stand for this in any way shape or form.

Posted by Brian, a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Feb 22, 2012 at 3:00 pm

Oh come on. What's next? Are they going to ban disposable food containers?

Thank you Pleasanton City council for forcing me to reuse a bag that will ultimately become filled with smelly disgusting crap that leaks out of the food placed in it. I know people will say, "Just wash the bag!", but what will more likely happen is I won't notice that something leaked into the bag until my next trip to the grocery store.

There is a reason disposable containers, including grocery bags, were invented. Not only for convenience, but also for sanitary reasons.

Posted by Getting feed up with California, a resident of Old Towne
on Feb 22, 2012 at 3:08 pm

Here's how I think I may handle this attack on paper bags and common sense. They want me to go green? This is green!

I will not bring my own bags and I will not buy theirs.

When I get to checkout I will have the checker put my groceries back into the cart without bags.

Then I will ask to have carry out help (which I have never done before) to take my groceries to my car where I will have them put into reuseable boxes that I will have in my trunk.

When I get home I will use the boxes to carry my groceries into the house.

Posted by local, a resident of Birdland
on Feb 22, 2012 at 4:06 pm

So glad the council has solved all our problems of pensions and other liabilities, how we will have enough facilities (esp. schools) with all the housing they have recently zoned, and they now got to the next highest priority, selling bags.

I am like many before me that reuse the bags for garbage and other things around the house. So the only thing this law has done for me is to make me buy bags instead of recycling them on how they best benefit me.

Well community, if you elect people like the current council, you should expect this.

Interesting that this was not a well publicized item. It affects most everybody in the city but I doubt very many people even knew about it.

Posted by Lynn, a resident of Del Prado
on Feb 22, 2012 at 4:48 pm

This is GREAT news!! Thank you Ptown Council. Plastic bags are so bad for the environment, not just in the waste they produce, but also in the production of them. For all you complainers: stop being so lazy, selfish and short-sited. Bring your own canvas bags and help out YOUR environment! It's really not that difficult.

Posted by Andrew, a resident of Vineyard Avenue
on Feb 22, 2012 at 5:38 pm

It looks like the city council is trying to live up to the standards of San Francisco city council--what a great accomplishment. Five people telling an entire city what is best for everyone. Pure insanity...I hope they hand smelly stickers for everyone....

Posted by Kim, a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Feb 22, 2012 at 6:10 pm

Great, we have to all buy canvass bags made in China so that we don't use the heathen paper bags (that go in the recycle bin by the way) made in the USA.

Don't we all feel better now?

Posted by Not just Pleasanton, a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Feb 22, 2012 at 8:36 pm

@Kim, nice logic, but think about your argument: how many times will that "canvass bag" or whatever re-usable bag be employed in your shopping around town? I'm guessing 100, 200 times?

Posted by Sherm, a resident of Canyon Oaks
on Feb 22, 2012 at 9:01 pm

Where's the logic in having a bunch of hippies telling the rest of the city how to shop? And are those same hippies going to pay all the medical bills people will be paying because of contaminated bags? First they legislated seat belts, and we said nothing. Then they put air pollution controls on cars, and we said nothing. And now mandatory shopping bags. When is the tyranny going to stop?

Posted by Sick of Big Brother, a resident of Stoneridge
on Feb 22, 2012 at 9:54 pm

Thanks, Pleasanton City Council. I will be sure to give my sales tax dollars to surrounding communities starting January 1.

Posted by Tim, a resident of Downtown
on Feb 22, 2012 at 10:08 pm

This is a good law that will help our shared environment! I applaud the city council for taking this step! The fact that ALL of the normally divided council voted for this is telling!

Posted by Anon, a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Feb 22, 2012 at 10:12 pm

1) That idea of putting groceries back into the shopping cart and then into boxes/containers in your car is a great idea. And we all do it every time we go to Costco already...

2) You can buy small 3-gallon bio-degradable bags for food scrap composting at Costco or Amazon (4 25-ct. boxes). The fit well in little composting pails, and then you can just knot them up and throw them in the green bin when full. Easy.

Posted by Not just Pleasanton, a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Feb 22, 2012 at 10:21 pm

And how many times will you bring the plastic bags you received at the store back to the store to have them used again for bagging your groceries? I'm guessing "none". Some of those plastic bags will be used for dog poop (and if they're the ones that are given for bagging groceries in the checkout line, well: "Never mind the whole host of implications landfills raise— dog poop sealed in a plastic bag is probably going to last longer than you, or your dog. " And if you use the plastic bag for your other garbage cans, it's still "single use" and very slow to biodegrade.

Recyclable paper bags are better for the environment, with the emphasis on the "recyclable, re-usable" part. But, honestly, is it REALLY skin off your nose to go with something that is truly re-usable, time and time and time and time again? Something that won't end up clogging the creeks, the drainage outlets here in Pleasanton, that won't interfere with the beautiful heron and egrets and ducks that float in our canals around town? That won't clog the beaches and tidepools on Highway 1?

Posted by steve, a resident of Parkside
on Feb 22, 2012 at 10:51 pm

Amazing, the lemmings that line up to happily be charged (taxed) for what has always been free and a part of a grocery stores required service. Ironically, the council hippies will be indirectly enriching WalMart, once they set up shop in the city. I love it when they try to mold the world in their elitist image, only to find out later about the unintended consequences. There's no bounds to their arrogance, as inspired by our commander in chief.

Posted by Stacey, a resident of Amberwood/Wood Meadows
on Feb 22, 2012 at 11:32 pm

Stacey is a registered user.

It was never free. It was a cost rolled up into their food prices. As someone mentioned above, if you brought your own bag, they'd usually refund you the cost of providing a bag.

Posted by Jim Van Dyke, a resident of Vineyard Hills
on Feb 23, 2012 at 7:21 am

Congratulations Mayor and City Council for showing leadership. With landfills reaching or exceeding capacity this is a move that is good for everyone, although the comments above prove that it might not be politically expedient for you in the short term. We need more public servants who won't cave in to the few hyper-vocal extremists, and rather push for practical solutions for both the immediate bottom line and the long term. As a local business owner I understand how hard it is to change habits. Leadership is about being among the first to change in areas that others will inevitably follow, despite the inevitable fallout from people who are afraid of change.

By the way, what's up with all the big talk from people who won't even post their full name? That's hypocritical.

Posted by Sherman Lollar, a resident of Canyon Oaks
on Feb 23, 2012 at 9:09 am

I'm not afraid to post my full name. And I'm also ready to lead an exodus out of this city with those moral enough to do the right thing with me. There is no longer any American dream. All there is is an ever tightening web of immoral hippie governmental regulations. The moral thing to do is to leave Pleasanton. Enforced bags is the last straw for me, and it sounds like many others as well. We'll leave the town for all you liberals to bask in the drug induced haze of sanctimonious saving the world for people who don't want it saved.

Posted by george bush, a resident of Downtown
on Feb 23, 2012 at 10:59 am

great news.. good by Sherman.. don't let the door hit you on the way out. Montana sounds like a good choice for you, there are plenty of white supremist compounds to choose from.

Posted by Jim, a resident of Downtown
on Feb 23, 2012 at 11:40 am

Funny video from the TV show Portlandia. I thought of this when I read the article. Web Link

Posted by Not just Pleasanton, a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Feb 23, 2012 at 12:20 pm

Ha, very funny, Jim. Thanks for sharing. I'll have to start watching that show...

Posted by Kim, a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Feb 23, 2012 at 12:28 pm

Sounds like another lawsuit in the making like San Luis Obispo

"Beginning Oct. 1, plastic bags no longer will be available and shoppers will charged for a paper bag at grocery stores throughout San Luis Obispo County if they forget their canvas or cloth bags.

Grocers who violate the ordinance could face up to six months in jail and up to a $1,000 fine a day."

Posted by WTH?, a resident of Parkside
on Feb 23, 2012 at 2:47 pm

So..... Retailers.

So no bags offered by Macys when I make a purchase? I have to guess What sizes of bags I need when shopping at the Mall?

The "doesn't this make you feel good" crowd is nuts

Paper bags are recycled and there are no shortage of trees that produce these bags.

I am truly saddened to see this

Posted by Kim, a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Feb 23, 2012 at 3:27 pm

Merchants also have to have intensive and onerous reporting requirements and record keeping to count the number of bags they sell.


Posted by Tango, a resident of Vineyard Avenue
on Feb 23, 2012 at 3:52 pm

When I was growing up,my mother and I would go to the grocery store and do the shopping using shopping baskets (no shopping carts) When we paid for our groceries , they were then placed in a box in our car. So boxes It will be, but I am going to take the box into the store and load the groceries straight in to the box, see how they like them apples. I will also bring a separate plastic tub to put my meat in. There is more that one way to skin a cat.

Posted by mom, a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Feb 23, 2012 at 7:28 pm

So does this apply to ALL stores in p-Town or just food stores?. Suppose I am browsing at the mall and find some great buys but I didn't bring a bag... do I have to pay for a bag? If I find a dress at the store, do I have to pay for a dress bag to carry it home in if I don't want it folded up?

Posted by selina orozcos, a resident of Jensen Tract
on Feb 23, 2012 at 7:39 pm

this will be interesting at the most--Lets take this one first-Plato's closet-in order to sell back clothes you HAVE to put your clothes in a grocery store bag. Number two-Many stores (Grocery outlet etc) make you leave backpacks and bags ) do not allow you to bring bags.

Posted by Sumati, a resident of Castlewood
on Feb 23, 2012 at 7:48 pm

I hate when people start using terms such as elitist or green views or for that matter conservative or right wing... when did we stop taking a objective analysis of issues. Personally I can think of positives for plastic bags, 1. Convenience- easy to hold and can hold odd shape items, 2. Re-useability as many have discussed. Negatives- Widespread trash, impact on environment.

Personally I can live without the plastic bags as it seems that we cannot dispose of them properly and they do have a negative environmental impact. This does not make me an elitist , it makes me someone who has noticed that people can't seem to throw these bags away properly (I don't see paper bags all over the place). And btw before widespread adoption of plastic bags it seems that our grocers and retail establishments still provided items that allowed us to bring our purchases home.

Are the removal of plastic bags an attack on the american dream due to some drug based liberal agenda... really? really?

If we look back at the past there are good and bad environmental regulations. I think we can all agree that the removal of lead from gasoline was a good idea while the addition of MTBE was a disaster. The current California regulations on particulates for diesel engines are another terrible idea.. but please take an objective look rather than look at everything as an attack on your rights due to some conspiracy theory, (whether its right winged or left) and make an intelligent, objective analysis rather than spew a bunch of nonsense.

Posted by Candyce Roberts, a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Feb 24, 2012 at 8:34 am

I just heard of Pleasanton's ridiculous new "law" and subsequent decline into idiocracy on the Armstrong and Getty show. The do do gooders are of course proud of themselves for this invasive and self righteous "save the planet" action. Steve Bocian and the entire council should be fired for having no independent thought process...lemmings following the rest of the "I can save the planet" fools into uber regulation in what used to be a vibrant city. Instead of paying attention to the city's downtown vacancy rates, gang activity in schools, and growing drug problems, our city leaders have spent their time on minutia and FORCING tax paying citizens to suspend rational thought and behavior. Trees are renewable resources. Paper bags are recyclable, non-toxic and break down quickly everywhere they are left...Remember, it was the greenie doo doo gooders who insisted we start using plastic bags in the first place instead of paper bags. Rational, thinking citizens need to start speaking out against governmental lunacy and slavery to green agendas that are designed to eventually have us all using candles instead of electricity, and eventually having to trash our earth saving electric cars because they use evil electricity which is generated from evil fossil fuel. Come on people! Get a grip...and I don't mean on your own paper bag.

Posted by coach, a resident of Birdland
on Feb 24, 2012 at 11:06 am

Wow! I thought that "1984" was fiction. In the last few years, I've been told (by "government") what kind of interior door handles to use, what type of exterior door hardware, which toilets were "legal", what type of light bulb, shower head, carburetor for old car, what kind of gasoline is "legal" for my cars, and on and on ...
I guess we're not learning from socialist Europe.

Posted by Karla, a resident of Danbury Park
on Feb 24, 2012 at 12:22 pm

I am with all of those who are asking the question of "other retailers". When we bring friends to "shop local" must we look at the shops we MAY go to and the things we MIGHT buy and find bags to accomodate those items? If we purchase something breakable at Domus, must we also bring our own wrapping material? I see the the thrift stores are exempt from this rule....where does one think they GET their bags from? When I buy something at the Hospice, I usually ask for "no bag", but when I drop things off - in my TJ's or other paper handled bags - the back is full of donations in the same type of bag...Nordstrom, Macy's, paper bags with handles. I like to take my donations clean and folded. Do we now bring in a big pile of stuff?
I think most of us recycle in way, shape or form...either by reusing plastic bags for "dog walks", cleaning the litter box, wrapping shoes for drop off at Maselli, whatever. Paper bags are the most reused - I use them for drycleaning, donations, Freecycling and more - speaking of dry cleaning...will we need to bring our own garment bags to the cleaners?? I like getting shopping bags and save them, intentionally, to reuse. Hopefully the Pleasanton retailers can com up with something creative to not drive us to shop in Livermore, and Dublin - those cities are not that far away and have most of the same stores. What's wrong with a little service and convenience? Hopefully we have not hear the end of this.

Posted by Steve, a resident of Stoneridge
on Feb 24, 2012 at 12:37 pm

I'll just keep a box of plastic garbage bags in the car and bring them into the store when I shop. I'll just hand them to the cashier to fill with my groceries at purchase time. Problem solved.

I'll just reuse the bags for small trash cans just like I've always done, excpet now I'll have the luxury of not having "Safeway", "Target" or "Walmart" written on our bathroom liners!

One minor point is that Home Depot and the mall stores can continue to provide plastic bags under this ordinance.

I don't understand why people like our Mayor haven't been reusing plastic bags. It sounds like it's either a guilt move or control move on the part of the council.

Posted by Steve, a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Feb 24, 2012 at 12:42 pm

Who's up for election I will see none of these bozos will get my vote. That all we need be charge for bags. The store will charge me for a bag will be my last time shopping there.

Posted by Ruth, a resident of Alisal Elementary School
on Feb 24, 2012 at 7:03 pm

Yet another intrusion by government. How will this effect our small businesses here in town that are already struggling to survive? With all the regs thrown at them from the state and city, it's a wonder any business can survive especially retail. Here's just another reg that can punish hard working small family businesses in this town.

What the heck is wrong with a paper bag? It's biodegradeable.

Posted by The Government You Deserve, a resident of Amador Estates
on Feb 25, 2012 at 6:49 pm

This is the government you deserve. In California and this city we vote for Democrats that know better than we how best for us to live, what to spend our money on, what medical care we actually do or don't need, what kind of light bulbs we should have. We are so incredibly lucky. Oh yes, I almost forgot, they also know better than we do what our religious beliefs should be. Could they actually be God? Wow! Just imagine!

Posted by Sherman, a resident of Canyon Oaks
on Feb 25, 2012 at 7:47 pm

I agree. With all these babies born out of wedlock - almost 50% of all kids are being born to unwed mothers - the next thing they're going to do is take away contraceptives. Because everyone knows contraceptives causes more unwanted pregnancies (besides being pre-emptive infanticide). Paying for one's own bags? I've never heard of such a thing!

Posted by JT, a resident of Downtown
on Feb 26, 2012 at 1:50 am

For more than five years I have used my own recycled bags exclusively.
I do it by choice and do not like being required to do it. I do not like government meddling in issues of personal choice. I do believe it will hurt local businesses.

Posted by HelenW, a resident of Vintage Hills Elementary School
on Feb 26, 2012 at 7:52 am

Where does this insanity end?

Mayor Hosterman, maybe the next steps towards your Utopian, do-gooder world in Pleasanton can be the following:

1. Require all patrons of Starbucks to bring refillable thermoses to avoid the billions of paper cups, handy insulators, stir sticks and plastic lids from filling landfills.
2. Demand all fast food restaurants to stop using paper bags and pager wrappers. They can figure out how to best get around this request.
3. No more paper bags to be used as doggie bags in restaurants. Patrons can bring Tupperware if they are anticipating any leftovers.

In your world the list can go on and on (although I think the Starbucks would somehow miss the mark as it most likely effects you most) as you impose your "ideals" on the rest of us.

The truth is, out of all the idiot examples I have listed, all make more sense than the elimination of paper or plastics bags since these items can actually be reused multiple times before their end of life.

Please do us all a favor and stop forcing your way of life on all the citizens of Pleasanton. I for one will be doing all I can to keep politicians like you out of office in the future.

p.s. I actually voted for you last election...BIG MISTAKE.

Posted by JT, a resident of Downtown
on Feb 26, 2012 at 10:08 am

I support incentives not mandates. I want government to stop making my choices for me.

Posted by Scrappy, a resident of Vintage Hills Elementary School
on Feb 26, 2012 at 1:13 pm

"This is really great, something I've been waiting for," said Mayor Jennifer Hosterman. "Everyone I've talked to is excited."

Mayor Hosterman - you need to get out there and REALLY talk to the people of the community, not the people in your office.

"This will reduce the negative environmental impacts caused by bag litter and landfill disposal," said Steve Bocian, assistant city manager, who recommended that the council adopt the new rule.

And to Steve Bocian - half the litter and garbage you'll find are cups of Starbucks, soda paper cups, paper bags of fastfood restaurants (McDonalds, Burger King, etc).... are you going to recommend banning those too?

At least in my household, I can reuse my grocery plastic bags for trash liners, doggie doo-doo bags, bag my donations to local charity, bag my bottle/can recycles, etc.

I can already imagine what this new ordinance will do to our P-Town businesses come 2013. Let us thank our city council and Mayor Hosterman for this.....

Posted by Kirsten, a resident of Birdland
on Feb 26, 2012 at 1:17 pm

Many other major cities do this. It's really not that big of a deal. San Francisco, San Jose, Portland, Washington DC, even parts of New York all have various plastic shopping bag bans and/or charge you for your paper bags. Pleasanton is not at all unique in this idea and if anything is getting around to it rather late. If you forget to bring your own bags, then you just pay 5 or 10cents for one. Sorry people but it's time to get over it. I don't understand what the big deal is. Why is everyone so resistent to change, even small ones that are for a good cause. It is a minor inconvenience and there is major damage done by plastic bags. I really don't understand what the uproar over this is.

Posted by Sherman, a resident of Canyon Oaks
on Feb 26, 2012 at 1:50 pm

First they came after those who didn't wear motorcycle helmets. Next they came after those who didn't wear seatbelts. Now they're going to charge 5 cents if you don't have your own bag? It's creeping socialism, people. Note that all the big cities Kirsten mentions have lots of used book stores. I call them indoctrination centers. It's no accident that these cities tend to vote for the Democrat Party. This fishy issue is about the moral and political sole of Pleasanton.

Posted by JT, a resident of Downtown
on Feb 27, 2012 at 1:49 am

I already use my own bags exclusively. Many of us do not think it is governments role to impose such things.

Posted by Candyce Roberts, a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Feb 27, 2012 at 9:50 am

Anyone interested in a citizen's drive to withdraw this "law"? Why don't we get a "return to common sense" petition going at the Farmers market.? I would sign it in a flash.

Posted by Ed Hagberg, a resident of Vineyard Hills
on Feb 27, 2012 at 10:32 am

I thought that the additional waste fees that were imposed on the citizens were to handle additional recycling efforts. Does this mean that the citizens will be told at a later time that the waste fee will have to be increased to support the new legistation?
Our group of representives have gone over the edge. The mayor indicated the she has received a resounding approval for this action. I guess the seventy people that I talked with must be on a different page, because they don't agree with this action. Again, big brother is trying to save use from ourselves.

Posted by Kirsten, a resident of Birdland
on Feb 27, 2012 at 2:15 pm

I'm glad that some of you already use your own bags. I almost always do too, except when I occasionally forget. Sadly, I am guessing that for many people though, it will take some sort of financial sway to get them to do this. Plastic bags do serious damage to marine animals and the environment and take 500-1000 years to decompose. If people keep using plastic bags at the rate that America has been for the last 30+ years, it is hard to imagine what will happen. Clearly, the common practice of using plastic bags for everything was a bad choice. Why is it so bad for the government to try to change this. Would it really ever change without financial incentives? What other ideas do people have?

As far as the analogy of not regulating seat belts and motorcycle helmets. Please, feel free to go helmet and seatbelt free. After working 15+ years in the hospital , I've seen quite a few other idiots who thought these things should not be "regulated". If you are lucky enough to survive, I welcome you to the world of the neurologically damaged, good luck! Just don't expect any body else's tax dollars to pay for your rehab when you are dropped by your insurance, which of course, you will be.

Posted by dmwalker, a resident of Ruby Hill
on Mar 5, 2012 at 7:00 am

For those that disagree with the new "law", simply purchase from merchants outside of Pleasanton. We've been shopping for groceries in neighboring cities for quite a while already due to the Safeway monopoly in Pleasanton.

Once the new law is in effect, we'll simply make *all* of our purchases (not just groceries) in neighboring cities. I'm sure Dublin and Livermore will be grateful for the additional business we provide to their merchants.

Sorry Pleasanton merchants. :(

Posted by information, a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Mar 5, 2012 at 10:13 pm

[This post was removed because it was only a story copied from another publication. If it had included discussion and referenced a link to the other publication, that would have been acceptable.)

Posted by Not Dublin, a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Mar 7, 2012 at 11:04 pm

[This post was removed because it was only a story copied from another publication. If it had included discussion and referenced a link to the other publication, that would have been acceptable.)

Posted by Not Dublin, a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Mar 8, 2012 at 9:39 am

This is the link I posted last evening, the one that was removed because "it was a story copied from another publication". Actually, it was NOT a story copied from another publication, but a link to the minutes of the Dublin City Council meeting of February 22nd. Odd that this is considered "another publication", as if it's a competitor of the Pleasanton Weekly??

In any case, here is the link to the minutes of the Dublin City Council meeting of Feb. 22nd (with video links on this page to the actual discussion of agenda points, topic by topic) where the Dublin City Council voted to "opt out" of the 2 Alameda County StopWaste proposals:

Web Link

Posted by lchen, a resident of Bonde Ranch
on Mar 18, 2012 at 8:42 pm

I'm so happy this is finally being implemented in Pleasanton! A strong advocate of energy conservation and environmental protection, this ordinance will help make Pleasanton a cleaner and greener city.

Posted by JohnS, a resident of Del Prado
on Jun 10, 2012 at 10:42 am

Hey Council!! How about this idea? Put poop bins in all the parks in town next to the water fountains. When poop scooper picks up dog droppings and deposits them in bin, he/she can then wash plastic bag and re-use it. This will also keep foul smell in a confined area of parks instead of all over the place. Everyone else bring your own bottled water. God....I'm sooo confused!

Posted by Over the top ! !, a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Jun 10, 2012 at 11:50 pm

Way too far ! !
I'm hoarding BOTH BAGS right now. I need plastic for diapers and paper perfectly fits collecting my many newspapers. I don't know what I'll do for either
Meddling, meddling BIg Brother !!! Butt out ! ! !

Posted by Gary S., a resident of Pleasanton Valley
on Mar 19, 2013 at 3:54 pm

Well - the Maggots are starting to come out - We didn't think this one too far forward - while some of us "Buy" trash bags - apparrently there is a major portion of the population that doesn't this is lovely as they are now dumping their food waste directly into the dumpsters and cans creating not only odor - but also providing a breeding ground for disease and maggots. Hmmm, did we talk this over with the CDC? - if we could only force everyone to bend to the will of the populous there wouldnt be an issue, right? Perhaps we need a ban on dumping waste directly in trash recepticals without appropriate containers/bags. Then we can spend more money on policing this issue - perhaps if the fines are high enough it will pay for itself - oh wait - it's the lower income people who contribute to this - they don't have extra money for fines.

Well thoughtout in my opinion - yes that's a little sarcasm.

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