[Note: Julie Lawson, author of this guest post, is the Director of Trash Free Maryland and a frequent partner of Blue Water Baltimore. She shares her insights into the failure last night of Baltimore City Council to pass a bag bill. Click the link at the end to read her entire article.]
Last night the Baltimore City Council voted down a proposal to apply a 10-cent surcharge on disposable plastic and paper shopping bags.
The measure, sponsored by Councilman Brandon Scott, had the potential to significantly reduce litter in Baltimore neighborhoods by prompting most residents to bring reusable bags with them when shopping.
The Council voted 6-9 against the proposal. Council members Scott, Jim Kraft, Mary Pat Clarke, Nick Mosby, Bill Henry, and Bill Cole voted in favor.
Opponents, led by Council President Jack Young, asserted that the fee would be a burden on small businesses and low-income residents, in spite of research in nearby Washington, DC, that demonstrates the opposite effect.