[HISTORY: Adopted by the Township Council of the Township of Parsippany-Troy Hills 7-16-2019 by Ord. No. 2019:33. Amendments noted where applicable.]
Editor's Note: This ordinance was originally adopted as Ch. 181 but was renumbered for organizational purposes.
As used in this chapter, the following terms shall have the meanings indicated:
- COMPLIANT BAGS
- Recyclable paper carry-out bags and reusable bags as follows:
- A. A recyclable paper carry-out bag is a paper bag that meets all of the following minimum requirements:
- B. A reusable bag means a bag with handles made of cloth or other washable fabric or is otherwise durable that is specifically designed and manufactured for multiple use and meets the following additional requirements:
- Any person purchasing goods or services from a retail establishment.
- Any person in control of, or having the responsibility for, the operation of a retail establishment, which may include, but is not limited to, the owner of the retail establishment.
- POST-CONSUMER RECYCLED MATERIAL
- A bag constructed of a material that would otherwise be destined for solid waste disposal, having completed its intended end use and product life cycle. "Post-consumer recycled material" does not include materials and by-products generated from, and commonly reused within, an original manufacturing and fabrication process.
- PRODUCE BAG or PRODUCT BAG
- A very thin bag without handles used exclusively to carry produce, meats, or other food items to the point of sale inside a retail establishment or, for reasons of public health and safety, to prevent such food items from coming into direct contact with other purchased items.
- Material that can be sorted, cleansed and reconstituted using available recycling collection programs for the purpose of reusing the altered, incinerated, converted or otherwise thermally destroyed solid waste generated therefrom. The material must be recycled in a manner that is environmentally effective, economically feasible and safe for employees as deemed feasible by the Township of Parsippany-Troy Hills.
- RETAIL ESTABLISHMENT
- Any store or commercial establishment that sells perishable or nonperishable goods, including, but not limited to, clothing, food and personal items, directly to the customer and is located within or doing business within the geographical limits of the Township of Parsippany-Troy Hills. Retail establishments include: business establishments that generate sales or use-tax; drug stores; pharmacies; supermarkets; grocery stores; convenience food stores; food marts; or other commercial establishments (i.e., restaurants and take-out food establishments or any other business that prepares and sells prepared food to be eaten on or off its premises). This definition also includes commercial establishments that sell clothing, hardware, or any other nonperishable goods. It does not include nonprofit charitable reusers as defined in Section 501(c)(3) of the Internal Revenue Code of 1986, or a distinct operating unit or a division of the charitable organization that reuses and recycles donated goods or materials and receives more than 50% of its revenue from the handling and sale of those donated goods and materials.
- SINGLE-USE PLASTIC CARRY-OUT BAG
- Any bag made predominantly of plastic derived from either petroleum or a biologically based source, such as corn or other plant sources, that is provided by an operator of a retail establishment to a customer at the point of sale. The term includes compostable and biodegradable bags but does not include reusable bags, produce bags, or product bags. This definition specifically exempts the following from the category of "single use plastic carry-out bags":
- A. Bags provided by operators and used by consumers inside retail establishments to:
- (1) Package bulk items, such as fruit, vegetables, nuts, grains, candies or small hardware items;
- (2) Contain or wrap frozen foods, meat or fish, whether packaged or not;
- (3) Contain or wrap flowers, potted plants, or other items where dampness may be an issue; or
- (4) Contain unwrapped prepared foods or bakery goods; or
- (5) Pharmacy prescription bags.
- B. Newspaper bags, door-hanger bags, laundry and/or dry cleaning bags, or bags sold in packages containing multiple bags intended for use as food storage bags, garbage bags, yard waste bags or pet waste bags.
No retail establishment within the Township of Parsippany-Troy Hills shall provide any single-use plastic carryout bags, as defined in § 294-1, above, to any customer at the checkout point or cash register, point of sale or other point of departure or point of distribution for the purpose of transporting products or goods out of the business or store.
All retail establishments shall make available to customers, for a fee, compliant bags, as defined in § 294-1, above, for the purpose of carrying goods or other materials away from the point of sale, subject to the provisions of this chapter. The fee charged shall be reflected in the sales receipt.
No provision in this chapter prohibits customers from using bags of any type that they choose to bring to a retail establishment themselves, in lieu of using bags available for a fee from the retail establishment, or from carrying away goods that are not placed in a bag.
All retail establishments shall make recyclable paper carry-out bags available to customers upon request for a fee of at least $0.10 but not more than $0.25 per bag if customers choose not to bring their own reusable bag.
A retail establishment may provide customers with a reusable bag, as defined herein, for a fee of at least $0.10.
All monies collected by retail establishments for the fees established herein shall be retained by the retail establishment.
All retail establishments must provide customers with compliant bags, upon request, if a customer fails to bring his or her own bags, in accordance with the fee structure set forth in § 294-4, above. A retail establishment may choose, in its discretion, to provide a credit to customers who choose to bring their own bags.
All retail establishments must provide at the point of sale, free of charge, compliant bags, to any customer who participates in, or is a beneficiary of, any United States government (federal) welfare program, or any local or Morris County welfare assistance program, or any New Jersey State welfare program, including but not limited to the New Jersey Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) or the New Jersey State Supplemental Security Income Program (SSI). Such customers must provide documentation proving that they participate in or are beneficiaries of such programs.
The Township of Parsippany-Troy Hills shall assist operators of retail establishments by referring them to appropriate municipal websites with information and to retail associations, unions or other organizations that have educational materials concerning the benefits of reusable bags rather than recyclable paper carry-out bags.
All retail establishments shall be strongly encouraged to educate their staff in ways to promote the use of reusable bags and to post signs encouraging customers to use reusable bags rather than recyclable paper carry-out bags.
All retail establishments shall be strongly encouraged to educate the public on plastic bag and plastic film recycling and to offer a take-back program.
The Director of Public Works or his or her designee, which may include the Office of Health in the Department of Human Services, has the responsibility of enforcement of this chapter and may promulgate reasonable rules and regulations in order to enforce its provisions, including but not limited to investigating violations and issuing fines.
Any retail establishment that violates or fails to comply with this chapter or the rules and regulations promulgated therefrom, after an initial written warning notice has been issued, shall be liable for a violation of this chapter.
If a retail establishment commits subsequent violation(s) after the issuance of an initial written warning notice, the following penalties shall be imposed and shall be payable by the operator of the retail establishment upon conviction thereof:
A fine not exceeding $100 for the first violation after the written warning notice is given;
A fine not exceeding $200 for the second violation after the written warning notice is given; and
A fine not exceeding $500 for the third and any subsequent violations after the written warning notice is given.
A separate offense shall be deemed committed on each day during or on which a violation occurs.
No later than one year after the effective date of this chapter, and annually thereafter, the Director of Health and Human Services shall report to the Township Council regarding the progress of the reduction of the use of carry-out bags, which may include the following:
The amount of carry-out bags in the residential waste and recycling streams;
The amount of carry-out bags identified as litter on the streets, sidewalks and in parks within the Township of Parsippany-Troy Hills;
The amount of carry-out bags found in Township storm drains;
The number of warning notices or notices of violation issued pursuant to this chapter; and
Any estimated cost savings for the Township attributable to carry-out bag reduction; this may include but is not limited to reduced contamination of the residential recycling stream and reduction in flooding or combined sewer overflows.