Recently, the Rio Grande Foundation successfully pushed Albuquerque Mayor Tim Keller to put the City’s plastic bag ban on hold for 30 days. Keller claims that he will make the ban even more stringent (eliminating thicker, reusable bags) and that the removal of the ban had “nothing” to do with keeping people safe from viruses and other health concerns with unclean bags.
Taking a somewhat different tack, was Bernalillo County which has an even stricter ban on plastics than does the City. According to a recent press release Bernalillo County Manager Julie Morgas Baca has issued an order suspending the single-use plastic bag ban for 60-days. Notably, unlike the City, the County cited public safety as a reason for suspending the ban.
“In the interest of safety during the coronavirus Covid-19 shutdown, I’ve lifted the ban so these single-use bags can be put to use,” says Bernalillo County Manager Julie Morgas Baca.
Chalk another one up for the Rio Grande Foundation which was also cited for its work on the issue in a recent Albuquerque Journal editorial.
Update: The City of Santa Fe has put its plastic bag ban on hold for now. Mayor Alan Webber. Unlike Albuquerque Mayor Keller, Webber cited health concerns saying, “If we don’t limit customer and employee interactions, and customer-to-customer interactions, they risk being high transference sites.” Webber’s order also asks stores to stop allowing customers to bring in reusable bags.