Author: Morgan Cullen

January 27, 2020

Plastic litter, especially disposable, single-use plastics (e.g. bags, food containers, straws) has become an increasing problem in Colorado’s cities and towns and a cause of concern to local residents. It litters municipal streets, parks and waterways and clogs our storm-water management systems. Additionally, non-recyclable plastics contaminate both recycling and composting programs in our communities - affecting the value of the recycled materials and compost.

As awareness has grown surrounding the local environmental impact of these products, a number of city councils and town boards across the state have begun taking steps to reduce or remove them from the local waste stream.
Current state law (CRS 25-17-104) limits local government capacity to set reasonable limits on single-use plastics in our municipalities. This undermines the ability of our democratically-elected institutions to respond effectively to the interests of their constituents in a manner that is consistent with the long-term goals and values of their communities.

The State of Colorado has always embraced a proud tradition of local control and respect for Home Rule authority and yet we are one of just 14 states who preempt local government authority on this important issue.

SB 20-010 does not restrict the use of any plastic products in Colorado. It simply repeals an outdated preemption from state statute and restores the ability of local governments to make decisions on behalf of the general welfare of their communities.

CML respectfully requests a “yes” vote on SB 20-010.

Related Document

Position Paper - SB 20-010