[HISTORY: Adopted by the Town Council of the Town of Mansfield 2-11-2019, effective 3-13-2019. Amendments noted where applicable.
Litter — See Ch. 131.
This chapter shall be known and may be cited as the "Ordinance Regulating Plastic Checkout Bags" or "Bring Your Own Bag Ordinance."
This chapter is enacted pursuant to the provisions of C.G.S. § 7-148 et seq., as amended.
The purpose of this chapter is to improve the environment in and around the Town of Mansfield, Connecticut, and the health, safety, and welfare of its residents and visitors by reducing the number of plastic bags used, encouraging the use and sale of reusable checkout bags and banning the use of plastic checkout bags.
As used in this chapter, the following terms have the meanings indicated:
- Any entity that sells merchandise, goods, or materials, including, but not limited to, clothing; food; or personal items of any kind, directly to consumers and includes, by way of example and not limitation, grocery stores; department stores; hardware stores; pharmacies; liquor stores; restaurants; catering trucks; and convenience stores. Business, for purposes of this chapter, shall not include nonprofit organizations with 501(c) designations.
- CHECKOUT BAG
- A bag provided by a business to a customer, typically at the point of sale, for the purpose of transporting purchases.
- ENFORCEMENT OFFICER
- One or more employees of the Town, designated by the Town Manager to enforce the provisions of this chapter.
- PLASTIC CHECKOUT BAG
- Any plastic bag that is provided by a business to a customer, typically at the point of sale, for the purpose of transporting purchases. Plastic checkout bag does not include:
- A. Bags used by customers inside stores, including but not limited to bags used to package bulk items, such as fruit, vegetables, nuts, grains, candy, or small hardware items; contain or wrap frozen food, meat, or fish, whether prepackaged or not; contain or wrap flowers, potted plants, or other items where dampness may be a problem; segregate food or merchandise that could damage or contaminate other food or merchandise when placed together in a bag; or contain unwrapped prepared foods or bakery goods; or
- B. Newspaper bags; door-hanger bags; laundry dry-cleaning or garment bags; or bags sold in packages containing multiple bags intended for use as garbage, pet waste, or yard waste bags; or
- C. Reusable bags as defined below.
- REUSABLE BAG
- A bag specifically designed and manufactured for multiple reuse.
The prohibition set forth in this chapter will take effect six months after its passage.
If, due to economic hardship, a business is not able to comply with the effective date of this chapter, the business may apply for a waiver. Upon a finding of facts to support the waiver, the Enforcement Officer may issue a time-limited waiver, not to exceed six months.
Written warning. If the Enforcement Officer determines that a business' practice is in violation of this chapter, the Enforcement Officer will issue a written warning. The written warning will be sent via certified mail to the business, describe the violation by listing specific findings of fact, stating that the practice must be corrected within 14 days of the date the letter was received, and shall include a copy of this chapter. The written warning shall only be issued once to any business. Subsequent violations of this chapter by the same business will not be eligible for a written warning, but will instead result in the immediate issuance of a citation as set forth below.
Fourteen days after receiving a written warning via certified mail, any business that fails to correct its business practice and thus continues to act in violation of the ordinance, shall be issued a citation via certified mail.
If, after 14 days from the date of mailing, a business fails to sign for the written warning sent via certified mail, a citation will be issued via certified mail.
Any business that previously received a written warning and is later found to be noncompliant with this chapter will be issued a citation via certified mail.
Citations will be dated, describe the violation by listing specific findings of fact, state the amount of the fine, and indicate the date on which the fine is due, which will be 14 days from the date of the citation, describe the process for appeal, and describe the daily fine resulting from continued noncompliance.
If any fine issued pursuant to the provisions of this chapter is unpaid beyond the due date, the Town may initiate proceedings under the authority of C.G.S. § 7-152(c) and Chapter 129 of the Town of Mansfield, Hearing Procedure for Citations, to collect such fine.
Any business fined for noncompliance with this chapter may appeal pursuant to the provisions of the Town of Mansfield hearing procedure for citations set forth in Chapter 129 of the General Code of the Town of Mansfield.