Plastic bag, wrapper recycling bill heads to Illinois House
SPRINGFIELD — Illinois lawmakers are pushing for a statewide plastic bag and wrapper recycling program, the first of its kind in the country.
The bill, sponsored by state Rep. Michael Tryon, R-Crystal Lake, requires plastic bag and wrapper manufacturers to establish collection sites within 10 miles of Illinois residents in 90 percent of counties by 2014.
“We could do nothing and recycle 2 percent of our bags next year, or we could put in a statewide program and make it to 13 percent,” said Tryon.
This collection program would evaluate plastic bag and wrapper recycling rates. It would expire in four years, unless the General Assembly renews it.
The bill also bars local governments, except Chicago and Cook County, from banning or taxing plastic bags and wrappers.
The bill passed the House Environmental Health Committee on Wednesday with support from manufacturers and retailers and is expected to go before the full House.
An identical version of the bill passed the Senate in late March by a 36-15 vote. The bill has support from the Illinois Manufacturers’ Association, Illinois Retail Merchants Association, Chemical Industry Council of Illinois and Hilex Poly, the largest plastic bag manufacturer and recycler in the United States.
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