In the March 7th edition of the Press Banner, writer Haig White gives Scotts Valley another good reason to not enact a plastic bag ban. It appears that the California legislature in Sacramento is already working on a statewide ban. That would make anything that Scotts Valley enacted redundant, most likely preempted, and a waste of time.
The proponents of this ban for Scotts Valley seem to think that the residents of Scotts Valley don't believe there is a problem with plastic bags in the ocean. Nothing could be further from the truth. We readily acknowledge that plastic bags in the ocean are a problem. We just don't see any evidence that bags from Scotts Valley are contributing to the problem. Scotts Valley does not have a significant litter problem — drive around and see for yourself. Every picture we see of officials cleaning up homeless encampments show lots of plastic bag litter around them, but Scotts Valley doesn't have a significant problem with homeless encampments. It has been suggested that bags from Scotts Valley could get to the ocean by floating down Branciforte or Bean creeks. If the social activists from Santa Cruz want to prove that we have a problem in Scotts Valley, they should go conduct a plastic bag census in the creeks and come back to the city council with some real facts.
Passing regulations like this is popular with social activists, but in the end, for Scotts Valley, such a ban would be little more than a symbolic gesture. We don't need new laws that are just symbolic gestures.
Jeff Hill, Scotts Valley