Environmentally Acceptable Packaging FAQs

WHAT DOES AFFORDABLE MEAN? 
Means that a compostable or recyclable product may cost up to 15% more than the purchase cost of the non-compostable or non recyclable alternative(s) and not be regarded, on balance, as exorbitant, overpriced, unreasonable or invaluable.

WHAT IS AN ASTM STANDARD?
Meeting the standards of the American Society for Testing and Materials (ASTM) International Standards D6400 or D6868 for compostable plastics, as those standards may be amended.

WHO IS CONSIDERED A BUSINESS ESTABLISHMENT? 
Any commercial enterprise that provides carryout bags to its customers through its employees or independent contractors associated with the business. The term includes sole proprietorship's, joint ventures, partnerships, corporations, or any other legal entity whether for profit or not for profit. This term is inclusive of any store or business which sells or offers goods or merchandise, located or operating within the town, including those referenced in FOOD OR GROCERY ESTABLISHMENT and FOOD PROVIDER.

WHAT DOES COMPOSTABLE MEAN? 
All the materials in the product or package, when composted in an industrial or municipal compost operation, will break down, or otherwise become part of, usable compost (e.g. soil-conditioning material, mulch) in a safe and timely manner. Compostable food service ware must meet ASTM-Standards for compostability and any bio-plastic or plastic-like product must be clearly labeled, preferably with a colorsymbol, to allow proper identification such that the collector and processor can easily distinguish the ASTM standard compostable plastic from non-ASTM standard compostable plastic. Compostable products are considered compostable under this section only if a business establishment or food or grocery establishment using the products is composting them with an industrial or municipal compost operation.

WHAT IS CONSIDERED DISPOSABLE FOOD SERVICE WARE? 
Interchangeable with TO GO packaging and FOOD PACKAGING MATERIAL and includes, but is not limited to: all containers, clam shells, bowls, plates, trays, cartons, cups, straws, stirrers, napkins and other items designed for one-time use associated with prepared foods, including without limitation, service ware for takeout foods and/or leftovers from partially consumed meals prepared by food providers.

WHO IS AN EVENTS PROMOTER? 
An applicant for any event permit issued by the town or any town employee(s) responsible for any town-organized event.

WHERE IS CONSIDERED A FOOD OR GROCERY ESTABLISHMENT? 
All sales outlets, stores, shops, vehicles or other places of business located within the town which operate to sell or convey foods, or beverages, which foods or beverages are predominantly contained, wrapped or held in or on packaging. FOOD ESTABLISHMENT shall include, but not be limited to, any place where food is prepared, mixed, cooked, baked, smoked, preserved, bottled, packaged, handled, stored, manufactured and sold or offered for sale, including, but not limited to, any fixed or mobile restaurant, drive-in, convenience store, coffee shop, cafeteria, short-order cafe, delicatessen, luncheonette, grill, sandwich shop, soda fountain, hotel, motel, movie house, theater, bed and breakfast inn, tavern, bar, cocktail lounge, nightclub, roadside stand, takeout prepared food place, industrial feeding establishment, catering kitchen, mobile food preparation unit, commissary, event, grocery store, public food market, produce stand, food stand, or similar place in or at which food or drink is prepared for sale, or for service, on the premises or elsewhere, and any other establishment or operation where food is processed, prepared, stored, served, sold, or provided for the public and any organization, group or individual which provides food as part of its service.

WHAT IS POLYSTERENE/PLASTIC FOAM? 
Blown expanded and extruded polystyrene (sometimes called Styrofoam™) or other plastic foams which are processed by any number of techniques including, but not limited to, fusion of monomer spheres (expanded bead plastic), injection molding, foam molding, and extrusion-blown molding (extruded foam plastic). Polystyrene and other plastic foam is generally used to make cups, bowls, plates, trays, clam shell containers, meat trays, egg cartons, coolers, ice chests, shipping boxes, packing peanuts, and beach or pool toys. The term POLYSTYRENE also includes clear or solid polystyrene which is known as ORIENTED POLYSTYRENE.

WHAT ARE POLYSTYRENE/PLASTIC FOAM PRODUCTS? 
Any item such as coolers, ice chests, cups, bowls, plates, clam shells, shipping boxes, containers, cutlery, or any other merchandise containing polystyrene/plastic foam that is not wholly encapsulated or encased by a more durable material.

 WHAT IS A REUSABLE CARRYOUT BAG? 
A carryout bag that is specifically designed and manufactured for multiple reuse, and meets the following criteria:

      (1)   Displays in a highly visible manner on the bag exterior language describing the bag's ability to be reused and recycled;

      (2)   Has a handle;

      (3)   Is constructed out of any of the following materials:

         (a)   Cloth, other washable fabric, or other durable materials whether woven or non-woven;

         (b)   Recyclable plastic, with a minimum thickness of 2.25 mils; and

       (4)  Has a minimum lifetime of 125 uses, which for purposes of this section means the capability of carrying a minimum of 22 pounds 125 times over a distance of at least 175 feet.

WHAT IS A SINGLE-USE PLASTIC CARRYOUT BAG? 
A bag provided by a business establishment to a customer typically at the point of sale for the purpose of transporting purchases, which is made predominantly of plastic derived from either petroleum or a biologically-based source.

CAN I USE SINGLE-USE PLASTIC BAGS FOR LARGER EVENTS? 
No business establishment or food or grocery establishment may provide single-use plastic carryout bags at any town facility, town-sponsored event, or any event held on town property. 

ARE STYROFOAM TO-GO CONTAINERS OKAY TO USE? 
Food providers within the town may not provide food in any disposable food service ware that contains polystyrene/plastic foam. Disposable food service ware that contains polystyrene/plastic foam is prohibited from use in all town facilities.

WHAT TYPES OF FOAM PRODUCTS ARE EXEMPT? 
Products made from polystyrene/plastic foam which is wholly encapsulated or encased by a more durable material are exempt from the provisions of this chapter. Examples include surfboards, boats, life preservers, and craft supplies which are wholly encapsulated or encased by a more durable material, and durable coolers not principally composed of polystyrene/plastic foam.

WHAT OTHER TYPES OF BAGS OR CONTAINERS ARE ALLOWED? -

  • Emergency, hospital, and medical supply and services procurement
  • Laundry dry cleaning bags, door-hanger bags, newspaper bags, or packages of multiple bags intended for use as garbage, pet waste, or yard waste; although the town encourages the use of recyclable or compostable products throughout
  • Bags provided by physicians, dentists, pharmacists or veterinarians to contain prescription drugs or other medical necessities
  • Bags used by a customer inside a business establishment to
  • Contain bulk items, such as produce, nuts, grains, candy, or small hardware items
  • Contain or wrap frozen foods, meat, or fish, whether or not prepackaged
  • Contain or wrap flowers, potted plants or other items to prevent moisture damage to other purchases
  • Contain unwrapped prepared foods or bakery goods
  • Bags used by a non-profit corporation or other hunger relief charity to distribute food, grocery products, clothing, or other household items;
  • Bags of any type that the customer brings to the store for their own use for carrying away from the store goods that are not placed in a bag provided by the store
  • Meat trays, plastic drink lids and cutlery (i.e.: forks, spoons, knives) are exempt from the provisions of this chapter
  • Any product purchased, prepared or packaged outside the town and sold in or delivered into the town are exempt from the provisions of this chapter.

WHAT WILL HAPPEN IF I DO NOT COMPLY TO THIS ORDINANCE?
The Police Department has primary responsibility for enforcement of this chapter. The Police Department is authorized to take any and all other actions reasonable and necessary to enforce this chapter, including, but not limited to, investigating violations, issuing fines and entering the premises of any business establishment during business hours. 

WHAT ARE THE FINES ASSOCIATED WITH NON-COMPLIANCE?
 Any business establishment that violates or fails to comply with any of the provisions of this chapter after a written warning notice has been issued for that violation shall be subject to a civil penalty that shall not exceed $200 for a first violation; $350 for a second violation within any 12-month period; and $500 for each additional violation within any 12-month period. Every 30 days that a violation continues will constitute a separate offense.

Complete Ordinance NO. 18024 Chapter 53 link: https://bit.ly/2s3FnaF