The City of South Lake Tahoe would like to remind community members that the ban on plastic single-use carryout bags at retail establishments takes place today within the City of South Lake Tahoe. The City is looking for voluntary compliance and has no intention of immediate enforcement.
The City of South Lake Tahoe Sustainability Commission first considered the initiative of banning single use plastic bags in 2008. The City Council adopted a Sustainability Plan in 2008, which included the development of “Zero Waste Policies” and promotion of “Reduce, Reuse and Recycle Practices” and adopted the Sustainability Commission’s Work Plan, which included the initiative. A work program was launched in 2009, which included community forums and public workshops in 2010 and 2011. Informal updates on the progress of the initiative were presented to the City Council during Commission Reports. In November 2012, a draft ordinance on a potential ban of plastic bags was presented to City Council. Following discussion and City Council direction, the ordinance was amended and brought back to the City Council in the summer of 2013. The ordinance was further amended and adopted in October 2013.
On October 15, 2013, the City of South Lake Tahoe adopted Ordinance 1061, which eliminated the distribution of single use plastic bags under the City’s Code, Article VI, Chapter 23 entitled “Ban on Plastic Single-Use Carry-Out Bags.”
The ordinance took effect for grocery stores and food vendors on January 15, 2014 and for all remaining retail establishments on October 15, 2014.
City Council amended the ordinance and extended the implementation date of retail stores to October 15, 2015. “On or before October 15, 2015, no remaining retail establishment that sells perishable or nonperishable goods, including, but not limited to, clothing, food, and personal items, directly to a customer, shall provide a plastic single-use carryout bag to a customer at the check stand, cash register, point of sale, or other point of departure for the purpose of transporting food or merchandise out of the establishment, except as provided in this section. A reusable carryout bag or a recycled paper bag may be provided to the customer.