Los Angeles County Superior Court rejects Hilex Poly's challenge to plastic bag ban, 10-cent paper bag tax

LOS ANGELES , March 26, 2012 () – Plastic bag manufacturer Hilex Poly Co. LLC’s challenge to a Los Angeles County ban on plastic bags and 10-cent tax on paper bags has been rejected by a superior court, Plastics News reported on March 23.

Los Angeles County passed the bag ban and tax law in 2010. It applies to unincorporated areas of the county.

Hartsville, South Carolina-based Hilex Poly, had argued in its suit, filed last October, that the law violated State Proposition 26. That law stepped up the legislative requirement for introducing new statewide and local fees and taxes and broadened the definition of a tax to include many fees.

However, on March 23, a Los Angeles County Superior Court judge ruled that a fee is not a tax because the retailers keep the money they collect.

For Hilex Poly, the case is far from resolved. VP of sustainability and environmental policy Mark Daniels said the company expects the case to be heard in the appellate court and was “confident” about its case as it moves through the legal process.

In an e-mailed statement to Plastics News, Daniels said the charge imposed by the county was “a hidden tax, exactly what Proposition 26 intended to stop."

Daniels also said Hilex Poly welcomes open debate about bag bans and taxes.

The primary source of this article is Plastics News, Akron, Ohio, March 23, 2012.

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