Vermont single-use plastic bag ban to continue despite worries about coronavirus spread

By Guy Page

The July 1 ban on single-use plastic bags will stay in force, says the chair for the House committee that advocated for the bag ban law last year.

“House Natural Resources is not looking to make changes to the July 1 implementation date banning single use plastic bags at the point of sale,” Chair Amy Sheldon, D-Middlebury, said in an email Monday, April 6.

“Reusable bags are, according to our own Department of Health, not of particular concern as a vector for Covid-19,” Sheldon said. In response to an inquiry, the Vermont Department of Health sent her committee this statement: “The short answer is that many surfaces — doorknobs, countertops, handrails — can be a disease vector so long as the virus or bacteria survives on it. Neither single-use nor reusable bags nor cardboard present a particular hazard. The answer for any surface is: be careful, wash your hands, don’t touch your face.”

Lou Varrichio/TNR

State Rep. Amy Sheldon, D-Middlebury

“I know that many grocery stores are allowing their continued use as long as customers bag their own groceries,” Sheldon said. “Some stores are not allowing their use and are using paper bags.”

Reusable shopping bags also have been banned during the emergency in New Hampshire, Massachusetts, and San Francisco, according to news reports.

Gov. Phil Scott said at a March 27 press conference he doesn’t have the power to stop the single-use plastic bag ban approved by the Legislature last year. He could delay implementation of the fines, he said, but overturning the ban is up to the Legislature.

A former Vermont legislator, a Republican, questioned Scott’s statement: “What a joke! He can shut down 80% of the economy, but he can’t stop people from a practice that has scientifically been proven to have increased health risk, when we’re in the middle of a public health crisis?”

The lawmaker was referring to a controversial University of Pennsylvania study claiming an association with increased incidence of food-born illness and death. Some Vermont lawmakers dispute the accuracy of the study.

CLARIFICATION:  As printed in yesterday’s Vermont Daily column, Vermont Deptartment of Health Commissioner Mark Levine spoke Monday of mitigation practices reducing by 1,700 the number of potential Vermont coronavirus deaths from a peak of 4,200; he was addressing a question about a Northwestern University computer data model that is considered to be on the high side of fatalities. A more realistic projection of Vermont fatalities is between 44 and 100, possibly up to 200, Levine said. As of 11 a.m. Tuesday Vermont fatalities stood at 23.

Read more of Guy Page’s reports.

Images courtesy of Wikimedia Commons/Joe Mabel and Lou Varrichio/TNR
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23 thoughts on “Vermont single-use plastic bag ban to continue despite worries about coronavirus spread

  1. Thanks to those of you in the legislature who are trying to force grocery shoppers to put up with filthy bags brought from home or wherever when at checkout. Some store clerks refuse to touch them as they stink and one look tells a story of filth. It is time we in Vermont push back against these people in Montpelier who think they control everything.

  2. My plan is to do 95% my shopping in North Adams and NH, until I can move out of Vermont and away from the commies that don’t care about common people.

  3. Not much more can be said on this subject than the comments above. The left wing extremists, and that is what they are, can never afford to back down a “previous win” such as the single use plastic ban, even if it makes “common sense”.

    One writer noted that the reusable bags with meat blood, etc. sitting in them is tantamount to how COVID got started in the beginning. It sounds like being similar to the “wet markets” in China where it all began began.

    To ignore that and for political reasons keep the single use plastic bag law in effect is stupidity at it’s worst. We wonder why these DEM/PROG morons are running this state into the ground? I don’t wonder. Again think about that VT is somewhere around 47th in economic strength and growth. States led by Republicans are all at the top of the list for growth and fiscal strength.

    Go ahead, keep voting these miscreants in.

  4. Disposable plastic shopping bags are a technological miracle. They are cheap, very strong, and easily recyclable.
    The evil ideologies that propel these useful idiots in the legislature are not their own. They are just puppets to their globalist masters. Useful idiots to the communists that seek to rule us, but dangerous fools to US!

  5. Amy, here’s a basic product material substrate difference. Paper products are from trees and processed into paper and cardboard basically the resultant being porous. A plastic product, bags, bottles, many household, vehicles and construction products are not porous. What product do you think that a virus would attach to? A lot of data says get rid of paper products. But you want them over plastic products. Plastic is far easier to clean if keeping. Furthermore you ca take a plastic groc bag and squeeze it into a 1/2 cup container.

    Even those cloth shopping bags are a virus hider.

    You should really analyze what you “feel good think” and really think and be informed. Is plastic good or bad? I don’t like what it does to the environment. Just learned there is a bacteria that consumes plastic. There are far more “dangerous things” being used and if plastic is used properly, it’s the better of the two. And it saves trees which the environmentalists would love.
    You are up against the tree luggers or possible safety. Don’t climb too far out on the limb.

  6. I hope we can take a page from the liberal playbook when this is over and seize on the opportunity to teach people that the liberals have their agenda mapped out and to hell with negative consequences.
    I hope this is the year we can bring common sense back to Vermont’s government.

  7. Plenty of bags for my 55 gallon burn barrel! I burn the plastic bags along with the empty boxes the ammo came in.

  8. Amy can’t give up her single use bag ban for a few months, Governor Scott is ok with absentee remote voting. What else will they jam down our throats before this session is over?

    My God, don’t any of them have vision beyond their own self interest?

    • These are all NWO water boys. It’s the same reason why so many in government want us to close the entire world and wait for a vaccine when a $20 prescription will keep people off ventilators and alive!

      Does Vermont have the drug?

      Is out TDS so bad we’d rather die using our nasty useable bag that’s got chicken and pork blood along with corona virus? Talk about nasty, I’m sure all Vermonters are washing them on every use.

      China loves the nwo, just like Gates. They have their man at the head of WHO. China buys all the medical supplies and resells them and threatens America with withholding them! Then they lie about America being tha cause, to which Facebook promotes on their site in China. And China withholds medical data about deaths, testing and cures.
      You can tell a man’s heart and a nations heart by what they say. You can tell tree or nation by its fruit.
      Do you think the United States will be using freedom and truth to get the world and its people back? Do you think we’ll share our successes, failures and supplies with the world? This will be American greatness, this will be a very graffiti, real time example of how our nation is founded upon self evident truths of which all world can benefit from. We are, God is the shining light. No other nation has ever come so close to following the truth, to which we need to redouble our efforts.

      Meanwhile those at the NWO head quarters want us to stop living, collapse America in particular so we can wait for Dr Fauchi ( does that mean false?) vaccine this fall that will probably be no more effective than the flu vaccine which is only 47% efficacy.

      No thank you, but I appreciate the offer. I’ll take the collective genius of a free people in the United States of America and God’s grace any day!

    • Hey Amy, In case you missed it, there’s a lot of virus going around. I suggest you get with the program and get off this stupd, short sited bag kick. Come in from the cold and join the common sense folks.

  9. Vermont’s legislators, I thought they were supposed to protect its citizens,
    so it appears that rather keep an agenda than protect its people !!

    Apparently they believe this ” Wuhan Virus ” is no big deal and we all need
    to use reusable bags ??

    Next time you’re out shopping and you see a ” Liberal Greenie ” with there
    soiled stained “reusable ” grocery bag, ask when the last time they washed
    it…………….I’ll used plastic !!

    Agenda driven Liberals, nothing else matters……….. wake up people !!

  10. What type of brain dead moron thinks that banning single use plastic wouldn’t promote unsanitary conditions but then Leftist’s of all stripes don’t think they feel. Perhaps when they feel sick or worse.they will finally think perhaps the ban was the wrong thing, naw they are too brain dead for that to happen.

  11. No consideration, even if folks die we will do this ban. How sad and ridiculous, hopefully wiser folks will prevail

  12. For better or for worse:

    Article 15. [Legislature only may suspend laws]
    The power of suspending laws, or the execution of laws, ought never to be exercised but by the Legislature, or by authority derived from it, to be exercised in such particular cases, as this constitution, or the Legislature shall provide for.

    • There’s probably another section that deals with emergencies like something that may make citizens ill or kills them! Not to mention the lack of brain power to realize that plastic bags from Vermont rarely end up in the ocean. Most ocean pollution comes from Asia via their river system.

      • I checked the constitution of Vermont. What Alex says above is all there is for suspending laws passed by the legislature. One would have to look at the enacted statutes to see if an emergency could override a destructive or dangerous law passed into law by the legislature so then the Judicial branch (VT Supreme Court) could rule on the issue. It would be easier if the Golden Dome dwellers could see their error and just repeal it. Don’t hold your breath!

    • Funny how Rights, delineated in The Constitution, can be suspended or removed, but insane Laws, passed by a coterie of fools, are etched in stone.

  13. These legislators are going to protect you, even if it kills you! The agenda means more to them than your health. Imagine some nice bloody run off from hamburg or fish you just bought laying in the bottom of your cloth grocery bag. So if it’s done correctly and you wash those bags after every use just think of the water and energy EVERYONE will be using. It’s amazing that the governor of NH can suspend their law but ours can’t? I never thought that I would live in a state that would require me to use a certain government approved bag for my groceries!

    • And let’s nor forget that there will be no more food scraps allow in the trash as of July 1st. I have not yet heard what the vast majority is supposed to do with rotting food if they have no place to compost, IE. apartment dwellers?

    • Oh it’s an agenda alright. Agenda 21 to be specific, carried out by community organizers funded by globalists….Soros, but then I repeat myself. ( question, how come auto-correct on the iPad capitalizes Soros?)

      Yeah I commented that Kia was a great organizer on Vt Digger, which they published. But then they would not publish my description of an organizer, which is a subversive, somebody who does not represent the peole or the constitution, but are intent on creating chaos, destruction for the purpose of gaining power and money. I also asked how come so many of them come from Chicago.

      That comment didn’t see any daylight!

      I could have said Hitler was a great anti-semite. Pol pot was a great authority. Vermont is riddled with organizers, lobbyist and New World Order water boys, it’s a major problem. We need more Americans and people who love America. Just say no, to NWO. Aside from the fact they have failed policies on every front be it environmental, economic, scientific, humanitarian and religion, they just aren’t much fun to hang out with or be around.

      • Vtdigger would like all conservative commenters to go away. They do not report the news, they report politics. The motto “News in pursuit of the truth” is a fraud. They let a few anti-liberal comments through (politically correct footnotes). The bios of all the reporters demonstrates that they only hire leftist to write their daily dose of politics. The Danziger daily cartoon is the poster child for their TDS. Trump lives in Danziger’s head rent free. They have a few old liberals on staff but most of their reporters are young and fresh out of the indoctrination journalist centers, colleges or universities or from one of the many liberal run organizations or publications. Their motto should be “Censoring the news so you don’t have to think”. I predict they will not last once the truth is known about who their financiers are. Another motto could be, “Vtdigger begging for money to continue our mission of hiding the truth through censorship, omission of facts and promoting the liberal agenda”.

  14. Vt Gov, Lt Gov, and the legislation are a JOKE. The legislation is the puppet master and Scott is the mindless puppet

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