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Single-Use Disposable Bag Ban

Sustainable Mill Valley Initiatives

On October 21, 2013, City Council adopted an ordinance restricting the provision of single-use disposable bags at grocery stores, pharmacies and convenience stores in Mill Valley. Encouraging the use of reusable bags is one example of the programs being implemented by the City to work toward the City's “Zero Waste” goal whereby no materials are landfilled, but instead fully recycled, repaired or reused by the year 2025.

Summary of the Ordinance:

Plastic Bag

  • Stores cannot provide customers with plastic carryout bags at the point of sale.
  • Pharmacy bags and product bags used to protect items from damage (such a produce, wine and bulk items) are excluded from bag fees and plastic bag ban.
  • Stores are required to charge 5-cents for each paper bag provided at the point of sale. Bag fees are retained by stores and can be used for any lawful purpose.
  • Customers may purchase a post-consumer recycled paper bag or a reusable bag at the point-of sale, or bring their own reusable bag from home to package items.
  • Customers participating in WIC or Supplemental Food Programs are excluded from bag charges.

This ordinance goes into effect November 21, 2013 with enforcement starting January 1, 2014 (regulated by the City of Mill Valley's Code Enforcement Office: (415) 388-4033. This ordinance will be reviewed by City Council approximately 6 months after adoption to reconsider the ordinance, including modifying the paper bag fee and/or applying the ordinance to other retail stores beyond grocery stores, pharmacies and convenience stores in Mill Valley. 

For more information: download the City Council staff report and final adopted ordinance or contact Danielle Staude, Senior Planner at (415) 388-4033 /


Last updated: 4/4/2014 11:30:26 AM