December 10, 2013
King County Superior Court ordered changes to Issaquah’s bag ban ballot language Dec. 6.
Craig Keller, chairman of Save Our Choice, filed a petition with the court Nov. 15 to protest language he felt misrepresented the bag ban and would misinform voters.
Save Our Choice was the primary driver behind the circulation of a successful petition that ultimately led to the City Council’s decision for a February referendum on the matter and drafting of the ballot by City Attorney Wayne Tanaka.
Keller’s main complaint objected to language in the 71-word title saying the law applies only to “certain retail establishments,” bans “lightweight” bags and “encourages reusable bag use.”
October 22, 2013
NEW — 2:45 p.m. Oct. 22, 2013
Voters will ultimately decide the fate of Issaquah’s plastic bag ban.
In a unanimous decision, the City Council approved a resolution to hold a special election Feb. 11 to ask voters whether a ban on plastic bags should continue.
“Over 60 percent of the citizens that contacted me were in favor of that ordinance,” Councilman Paul Winterstein said, defending his vote in favor of the original ban. “And I followed that duly and I take that very seriously. But we’re also a city of laws. I’m in favor of putting it in front of a vote, and I can accept whatever outcome that comes.”
October 4, 2013
NEW — 1 p.m. Oct. 4, 2013
The petition is in the bag.
After consumer group Save Our Choice fought a long battle to gather enough local support, King County officially approved the petition to end the ban on plastic bags Oct. 4.
“King County Elections has completed verification of the signatures submitted to our office for the City of Issaquah Initiative Petition regarding the Repeal of Plastic Bag Ban and Forced Paper Bag Charge,” Sherril Huff, director of King County Elections Department wrote in her letter notifying Save Our Choice of the findings.
“Of the signatures that were compared against those on file with our office, 2,597 were determined to be registered voters of the city of Issaquah,” she wrote. “Since that number met the requirement of 2,549, it is determined that the petition is sufficient.”
April 23, 2013
After almost two months of the Issaquah bag ban, which bars large-scale retailers from distributing plastic shopping bags to customers, the reception has been generally positive.
The ban went into effect March 1 for retail stores larger than 10,000 square feet.
Prior to the implementation, the city’s Department of Sustainability launched an extensive education campaign for citizens and retailers. Resource Conservation Coordinator Micah Bonkowski was pleased to find that most of the affected stores were prepared for the law.