The people have spoken and they want plastic bags banned on Hilton Head Island, according to the results from a recent survey.
About 700 people responded to the survey about plastic bag use, which was sent out by the Hilton Head Island-Bluffton Chamber of Commerce on June 26.
Of those who responded, 71 percent said they believed plastic bags should be banned on Hilton Head, according to the chamber.
Additionally, 67 percent of those who responded said that they already recycle their plastic bags. But, 60 percent also said they did not believe there are adequate recycle locations or ways to recycle the bags.
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Rikki Parker, South Coast Project Manager for the Coastal Conservation League, said the survey results were reassuring.
“The survey was geared toward local merchants, so it’s great to see that kind of positive feedback that the majority of the public and businesses support it,” she said.
Parker delivered a presentation to the Hilton Head Island Planning Commission on June 21, where she gave the commission members a draft point-of-sale plastic bag ban ordinance, based off of the two South Carolina ordinances recently implemented on Folly Beach and Isle of Palms.
As for a next step in the process, Shawn Colin, deputy director of community development for the Town of Hilton Head, said the planning commission has to get approval from Town Council first to extend any resources to implement a plastic bag ban ordinance.
Because Town Council did not include a plastic bag ban ordinance in its annual work plan, the council must give special approval to have this issue added to its list of priorities, Colin said.
“There is no clear path on how (Town Council) could add it to their work program,” Colin said. “A member of the public, planning commission or Town Council could make that request.”
The next Town Council meeting, where the ordinance has the potential to be discussed, will take place July 18.