NARBERTH, PA – October 19, 2018 – State Senator Daylin Leach (D-Montgomery/Delaware) and Representative Mary Jo Daley (D-Montgomery) today announced legislation that would ban the automatic distribution of single-use plastic straws by Pennsylvania restaurants to consumers. They did so with the support of members of the Narberth Borough Council, which voted unanimously Wednesday to regulate plastic straws and bags in the borough.
“It’s not often that we can claim such a big win for the environment. Narberth accomplished something amazing,” Leach said. “The citizens of Narberth decided that they’re tired of seeing plastic bags in their parks and finding straws in their streams. It’s great to see businesses, environmentalists and other advocates come together to solve a serious problem. I want to thank Narberth councilmembers for their hard work getting this ordinance done, and I hope that other local governments will follow their lead. Mary Jo and I ask the Pennsylvania General Assembly to act just as swiftly in passing our bills.”
Leach’s goal is to reduce the use of single-use plastic straws in Pennsylvania. Leach’s bill would prohibit the automatic serving of single-use plastic straws by vendors, like restaurants and bars, to customers. It would also prohibit the open display of single-use plastic straws and devices used to dispense them. Leach’s bill would not prohibit the use of such straws. Restaurants would continue to be allowed to give out straws whenever a customer asks for one.
Leach circulated his proposal to his Senate colleagues in the form of a memo on Wednesday, October 17, 2018. All senators will be able to co-sponsor Leach’s proposal if they wish, and the process will continue into the 2019-2020 legislative session. Once the co-sponsorship process is complete, Leach will introduce the policy’s language, at which time the proposal will be numbered and assigned to a Senate committee for consideration.
Narberth is the first borough, municipality or township in the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania to pass an ordinance of this kind. Leach and Daley’s legislation is also the first of its kind introduced in Pennsylvania. Leach also introduced Senate Bill 294, a bill to impose a fee on the use of plastic bags in retail stores, similar to the fee Narberth passed.
Speakers at the event included:
- Senator Daylin Leach
- Narberth Mayor Andrea Deutsch
- Narberth Councilmember Rob McGreevey
- Brooke Goodspeed, opening the G.E.T Café in Narberth
- Erica Daniels, opening the G.E.T Café in Narberth
- Jesse Lytle, 2050 Grassroots
- Logan Welde, Philly Clean Air Council
- Kimberly Bezak, Narberth Civic Association
- Melissa Seiter French, Service Unit Manager, Mill Creek Girl Scouts
- Maurine McGeehan, Lower Merion Conservancy
- Narberth Borough Solicitor John Walko
Media outlets are welcome to publish the attached PDF files in print and online.
Senator Daylin Leach represents the 17th Senatorial District, which includes parts of Montgomery County and Delaware County. He is also the Democratic Chairperson of the Senate Judiciary Committee. For more information visit www.senatorleach.com/newsroom.