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S.C. Statehouse effort to undercut bag bans failed this year. But the fight’s not over.

May 15, 2018

The Post and Courier,

May 13, 2018-

The push to prevent South Carolina towns and cities from enacting their own local bans on plastic bags died in the Statehouse. But the fight is not over for the pro-bag lobby, which represents a plastics industry that remains a vital and lucrative part of the state’s economy. And the legislation is likely to come back again in 2019. Another possibility: rolling back the bans that some governments have already adopted.

“This issue is just not going away,” said Matt Seaholm, executive director of the American Progressive Bag Alliance, an interest group funded by the plastics industry. Several communities, mostly from South Carolina’s coast, have taken to banning single-use plastic bags — like those used in grocery stores — citing environmental concerns. Alarmed by the trend that’s part of a national movement, retail groups, plastic industry interests and business organizations coalesced to stop the effort by hiring lobbyists and making political donations as they supported the pre-emption bill in the S.C. General Assembly.

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