The Town of Ladysmith is working on a bylaw to ban plastic checkout bags and other single-use plastics.
Town councillors, at a committee of the whole meeting on Tuesday, May 9, recommended a motion to draft a bylaw to regulate items such as plastic bags, straws and utensils and polystyrene foam cups and takeout containers.
The recommendation follows an engagement survey that received about two dozen responses from local businesses such as grocery and retail stores and restaurants.
Mayor Aaron Stone suggested that there has been inaction from the federal government on the file after the provincial government granted authority to municipalities to ban single-use plastics without ministerial approval, instead of implementing a provincewide ban.
“This ship is so far gone. We’re really late on this,” he said. “There is no excuse for continued use of plastic utensils and Styrofoam cups.”
When local businesses were asked what makes it difficult for them to offer reusable or compostables alternatives, 64 per cent indicated that cost is the biggest reason. Stone said unfortunately, those costs will have to be built into retail costs.
“It’s moving in this direction all over the place and has been for a while. Reflecting on my morning trip to Costco, they don’t have bags there, they probably never had bags there and no one really thinks about it,” said Coun. Ray Gourlay. “The answers from the survey takers [were] really helpful, and made me reflect on the products that are out there.”Follow @Baileyseymour02