Plastic bag fee is OK with most Princeton shoppers
Would you be willing to shell out an extra 10 to 25 cents for each plastic or paper bag you get at the supermarket? Officials in Princeton are considering a proposal to create a bag fee in their town, and it seems many residents think it's a good idea.
"Truthfully, I'm for anything for the environment, so I would definitely bring my own bags," said resident Mary Jacobs. "I do that now anyway when I go shopping."
Jacobs said putting this kind of law on the books would hopefully encourage people to think about recycling more.
"Even when it comes to buying coffee, I bring my own ceramic mug so I don't have to use plastic," she said. "I think it would be nice to encourage people to use more reusable bags because there's too much waste in the world."
Another local resident is already ahead of the curve as well.
"I've been bringing my own grocery bags for about 10 or 12 years, so I think people should bring their own materials," the resident said. "What a waste it is. Everyone has a collection of bags."
Harvey Milton of Princeton agreed.
"I think it's a great idea," he said. "I think there are far too many plastic bags being used and I think the more we can do to encourage people to bring their own bags is a great (idea). It's common in Europe, it should be common here."
A woman standing nearby chimed in.
"Everyone is environment-conscious, and there's a lot of plastic bags being used, so nothing wrong with that," she said. "Taking into consideration landfills are getting filled, it's not such a bad idea."
But not everybody is thrilled with the proposal.
"I think when it comes to regulation, less is more," one shopper said. "Penalizing any individual for their choices is a little redundant at this point, in our society."
Another man said the suggested fee is a little excessive.
"It's too much," he said. "Make it 5 cents, OK?"
If adopted, the plastic bag ordinance would be the first of its type in New Jersey, and any money raised would go back to the particular vendor that sells the bags. Last November, Mercer County voters overwhelmingly gave a thumbs-down to a proposal to charge 5 cents for disposable plastic bags at area stores.