HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES

H.B. NO.

326

THIRTY-SECOND LEGISLATURE, 2023

 

STATE OF HAWAII

 

 

 

 

 

 

A BILL FOR AN ACT

 

 

relating to plastic straws.

 

 

BE IT ENACTED BY THE LEGISLATURE OF THE STATE OF HAWAII:

 


SECTION 1. The legislature finds that Americans use five hundred million disposable drinking straws daily, according to the Be Straw Free Campaign. To visualize this, five hundred million straws would circle the earth two and a half times. These straws are made of plastic, intended for one-time use, rarely recycled, and are seemingly everywhere. Often the plastic straws end up as marine trash, clogging up oceans and entangling, or being consumed by, sea life. Conservationists report that plastic straws are among the most common plastic items volunteers clean from beaches.

While the legislature encourages consumers to change their habits and refuse plastic straws, legislative action can have a more effective impact on the abundant use of plastic straws. Seattle, Washington was the first jurisdiction to prohibit the sale and distribution of plastic straws in 2018. Since then, many more have passed and are considering similar legislation. The legislature also finds that when a straw is necessary, there are numerous alternatives, including reusable and paper straws.

The purpose of this Act is to prohibit the distribution, sale, or provision of plastic straws by individuals and businesses, and establish a fine for violators.

SECTION 2. Chapter 342H, Hawaii Revised Statutes, is amended by adding a new section to be appropriately designated and to read as follows:

"342H-   Plastic straws; prohibited. (a) Except as provided by subsection (c), no individual or business shall distribute, sell, or otherwise provide a straw composed in full or in part of plastic.

(b) Any individual or business who violates subsection (a) shall be fined not less than $100 and not more than $500 for each offense.

(c) A business may provide a single-use plastic straw, upon request, to an individual for whom a non-plastic straw is unsuitable due to a medical or physical condition. A business may purchase or otherwise acquire single-use plastic straws in sufficient numbers to meet the needs of individuals who request plastic straws due to a medical or physical condition. Nothing in this section shall conflict, or be construed to conflict, with the Americans with Disabilities Act, the Disabled Persons Act, or other applicable laws concerning the rights of individuals with disabilities.

(d) As used in this section:

"Business" means any commercial enterprise or establishment operating in the State, including any individual proprietorship, joint venture, partnership, corporation, limited liability company, or other legal entity, whether for profit or not for profit, and includes all employees of the business or any independent contractors associated with the business.

"Plastic" means any material made of polymeric organic compounds and additives that can be shaped by flow."

SECTION 3. This Act does not affect rights and duties that matured, penalties that were incurred, and proceedings that were begun before its effective date.

SECTION 4. New statutory material is underscored.

SECTION 5. This Act shall take effect on January 1, 2024.

 

INTRODUCED BY:

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Report Title:

Plastic Straws; Prohibition; Fine; Exemption

 

Description:

Prohibits the distribution, sale, and provision of plastic straws, except for those who request single-use plastic straws for medical reasons. Establishes a fine for violators. Takes effect 1/1/2024.

 

 

 

The summary description of legislation appearing on this page is for informational purposes only and is not legislation or evidence of legislative intent.