Because of a state law passed in 2021, Colorado will begin phasing out single-use plastic carryout bags and polystyrene products—such as takeout containers.
There are some exceptions:
- Small businesses, which the state describes as any business with three or fewer locations.
- Pharmacies and dry cleaners can continue to use plastic bags.
- Bags can continue to be used to wrap frozen foods, meat, seafood, plants, and bulk goods that would otherwise be contaminated.
- The law does not include farmers and roadside markets.
- This doesn't apply to customers that are a part of a federal or state food assistance program.
The phase-out starts in 2023 when the state will require most businesses to charge a 10 cent fee for all single-use plastic carryout bags or recycled paper carryout bags.
In 2024, the state will prohibit the use of single-use plastics and polystyrene—however customers can still pay the 10 cent fee for recycled paper carryout bags.
Stores are required to display a sign alerting customers about the fee.
What happens with the money:
In 2024, state law will require stores to give 60 percent of carryout-bag-fee revenue to the municipality or county where the store is located on a quarterly basis.
The law says municipalities and counties can only use the carryout bag fee revenue to pay for administrative and enforcement costs; and any recycling, composting, or other waste diversion programs and related outreach and education activities.
City of Greeley officials will provide an update to Council once revenue streams become clearer after the legislation takes effect. Discussions on how the funding should be applied will also take place with Council at that time.
2023 Bag Fee Information Flyer (English and Spanish)