The same board that introduced and then fought for the plastic grocery bag ban in Barrington has been asked to keep an eye on its impact on the town.
The Conservation Commission was charged by the Town Council on Monday night with showing the bag ban’s impact on businesses and residents alike. The ban went into effect on New Year's Day for two years.
The vote was unanimous, 5-0, to hand that task over to the same board that pushed for the ban.
“Tell us how things are going twice a year,” said Barrington Town Councilor Cynthia Coyne, who put the item on Monday night’s agenda.
Other towns will be looking at Barrington, said Coyne, to demonstrate the effectiveness of the program.
“We are among the leaders now on this issue,” she said.
How the members of the Conservation Commission should go about assessing or measuring the impact was left up to them. Other towns with similar bans are expected to be able to provide some guidance.
Cynthia Fuller, chair of the Conservation Commission, accepted the charge for that board. The plastic bag ban was the idea of Roger Williams University professor Joseph Roberts, a member of the Conservation Commission; he got the full support and endorsement of that board.
The commission was asked to report back to the Town Council on or around June 1 and Dec. 1 each year. The ban is in effect for the next two years -- until January of 2015. There is a "sunset" provision in the ordinance that mandates the ban.