Overview of the Plastic Bag Recycling Act

The Plastic Bag Recycling Act (P.A. 095-0268) became effective on January 1, 2008 and created the Plastic Bag Recycling Task Force. The Task Force is responsible for developing and implementing a pilot recycling program and is comprised of retailers, recyclers, a Lake County board member, state representatives, a state senator, the Solid Waste Agency of Lake County SWALCO), and the Illinois Environmental Protection Agency.

Retailers throughout the county are implementing plastic bag and film collection programs that facilitate the return and recycling of plastic bags distributed to consumers by retailers. When the pilot program concludes at the end of this year, the Task Force will submit a report to the General Assembly that will address the costs, benefits and challenges of implementing the pilot program. Ultimately, the findings may be used by the General Assembly to determine if statewide legislation is warranted.

The program requires the involvement of both retailers and consumers to be successful. The retailers’ role is to provide an accessible, clearly marked collection bin for the plastic bags and film. The consumers’ role is to collect the plastic bags and film and bring it to a convenient location as part of a regular trip to the store. Please refer to plasticbagrecycling.org and/or PUBLIC ACT 095-0268 for more information regarding this program and plastic film recycling in general.