FPA – January February 2021 - 11

State Advocacy Corner

2021 FRAMED BY
FALL ELECTIONS
STATE AND LOCAL GOVERNMENTS WILL BE
PICKING UP PACKAGING ISSUES
LAST YEAR, ELECTIONS at the state level had an
outsized importance similar to elections at the federal
level. A major driver was the 2020 census and the redistricting that will happen starting next year for Congressional and state legislative districts. State legislatures
generally oversee that process, so an incredible amount
of money and attention was spent on who will control
legislative chambers going into 2021. The control of state
legislatures also will have an impact on key FPA issues,
such as Extended Producer Responsibility (EPR) and
recycled-content mandates.
Important state legislative chambers to monitor in 2021
include the Maine Senate, Minnesota Senate, Michigan
House, and the Arizona House. Legislative majorities that
are more progressive on environmental issues could indicate swifter action on EPR, recycled content, and other
policies that will impact flexible packaging.
Additionally, in a typical election year, state legislatures would have long since adjourned. However, since
COVID-19 has changed the calendar and changed priorities, a few key states like California, Oregon, Washington,
and New Jersey were continuing work on policy proposals
through 2020. Consider this summary of where some
debates stand:
CALIFORNIA
In a hard-fought effort, SB 54/AB 1080 fell four votes shy
of passing as the California Legislature ended its two-year
session in August. The flexible packaging industry has been
engaged in active advocacy on this bill, which would have
set mandatory recycling rates and dates for packaging.
Additionally, the Statewide Commission on Recycling
Markets and Curbside Recycling-created by AB 1583-
have been meeting to discuss policy recommendations that
will help California achieve its 75% recycling, composting,
and source-reduction goal. This commission is expected
to recommend legislation for 2021. Many industry players,
including FPA, have now expressed concern with the lack
of industry perspectives with this commission.
NEW JERSEY
The New Jersey Legislature continues to consider
SB 2515 and AB 4676 that would establish new recycled content standards for rigid plastic containers, glass
containers, paper carryout bags, plastic trash bags, and
reusable carryout bags made of plastic film. It also would

prohibit the sale of polystyrene loose fill packaging. The
bills have had several hearings in the Senate Environment
Committee and were expected to move in December.
While the focus has been on rigid plastic packages, the
precedent will have an impact beyond just the listed packaging types-as this could be the first recycled content
mandate to pass in a state in nearly 30 years.
OREGON
The Recycling Steering Committee has now released
its recommendations. Elements in the recommendations
include truth in labeling requirements, contamination
reduction, uniform statewide recycling lists, and EPR. As a
result, the Oregon Department of Environmental Quality
is likely to propose 2021 legislation with a statewide list of
accepted materials and an EPR requirement.
WASHINGTON
The Plastic Packaging Evaluation and Assessment Law is
currently being completed and was due to be delivered to
the state legislature before 2021. Under the bill, the state
Department of Ecology (DoE) commissioned an independent study of plastic packaging that will offer recommendations for reducing plastic packaging waste. These
recommendations were commented on in September.
They focus heavily on EPR and recycled content mandates. They will likely help spur EPR legislation for 2021
in Washington.
If the current policy trajectory of these issues in key
states holds, 2021 will be an extremely active year for the
flexible packaging industry at the state level.
J a n u a r y/ F e b r u a r y 2 0 2 1

F l e x P a c k V O I C E TM

11



FPA – January February 2021

Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of FPA – January February 2021

FPA – January February 2021 - Cover1
FPA – January February 2021 - Cover2
FPA – January February 2021 - 1
FPA – January February 2021 - 2
FPA – January February 2021 - 3
FPA – January February 2021 - 4
FPA – January February 2021 - 5
FPA – January February 2021 - 6
FPA – January February 2021 - 7
FPA – January February 2021 - 8
FPA – January February 2021 - 9
FPA – January February 2021 - 10
FPA – January February 2021 - 11
FPA – January February 2021 - 12
FPA – January February 2021 - 13
FPA – January February 2021 - 14
FPA – January February 2021 - 15
FPA – January February 2021 - 16
FPA – January February 2021 - 17
FPA – January February 2021 - 18
FPA – January February 2021 - 19
FPA – January February 2021 - 20
FPA – January February 2021 - 21
FPA – January February 2021 - 22
FPA – January February 2021 - 23
FPA – January February 2021 - 24
FPA – January February 2021 - 25
FPA – January February 2021 - 26
FPA – January February 2021 - 27
FPA – January February 2021 - 28
FPA – January February 2021 - 29
FPA – January February 2021 - 30
FPA – January February 2021 - 31
FPA – January February 2021 - 32
FPA – January February 2021 - Cover3
FPA – January February 2021 - Cover4
https://www.nxtbook.com/ygsreprints/FPA/FPA_MarchApril2021
https://www.nxtbook.com/ygsreprints/FPA/FPA_JanuaryFebruary2021
https://www.nxtbook.com/ygsreprints/FPA/FPA_NovemberDecember2020
https://www.nxtbook.com/ygsreprints/FPA/FPA_SeptemberOctober2020
https://www.nxtbook.com/ygsreprints/FPA/FPA_JulyAugust2020
https://www.nxtbook.com/ygsreprints/FPA/FPA_MayJune2020
https://www.nxtbookmedia.com