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Qualicum Beach on path to ban plastic bags

Bylaw will get legal advice prior to third reading
The Town of Qualicum Beach has moved one step closer to banning plastic bags in the community. — NEWS file photo

The Town of Qualicum Beach’s plastic bag ban bylaw will be sent for legal advice before third reading.

On March 19, council passed first reading of a bylaw that would eventually ban the sale or provision of single-use plastic bags in Qualicum Beach.

The vote was 4-1 in favour of the motion, with Coun. Bill Luchtmeijer opposing it.

Related: Qualicum Beach takes step closer to banning plastic bags

Related: Nanaimo votes to ban plastic bags

Amendments to the bylaw have occurred since first reading, like the addition of a plastic straw ban, therefore legal advice is needed before third reading of the bylaw.

The amended bylaw should be ready for council’s consideration at the next regular council meeting on August 20.

During the July 16 council meeting, in which the plastic ban was discussed, Coun. Luchtmeijer reiterated his lack of support for the ban.

“I won’t be supporting the whole concept of a plastic ban,” he said. “I really think if we’re serious about dealing with disposal of single-use plastics that we as a town are in a prime position to collect and deal with the items in our garbage collection system.”

Luchtmeijer suggested a system in which people could put plastics in a compartment on their garbage cans for regular pickup.

“An outright ban will just lead to all sorts of abuse, we’re going to end up with all sorts of people being fined because they’re not following the rules,” he said.

Coun. Anne Skipsey agreed that an option to recycle plastics with garbage pickup would be a good idea.

“I do think as a local government we need to up our expectations and set the standard,” she said.

The vote remained 4-1 in favour of the motion, with Luchtmeijer the only councillor in opposition.

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