The Arcata City Council on Wednesday will vote on the final adoption of an ordinance which would prohibit single-use plastic bags at most businesses within city limits and a resolution that would encourage the Humboldt County Board of Supervisors to designate Arcata Fire Protection District stations as safe surrender sites.
”We're just trying to show support,” City Manger Randy Mendosa said. “Fire stations are very convenient, and they're very handy and there's trained EMTs at the fire stations, so it makes sense that these are locations to have these safe transfers take place.”
Under state law, anyone with custody can confidentially surrender a baby to public or private hospitals, designated fire stations or other safe surrender sites, within 72 hours of birth without fear of prosecution, according to a staff report. The law, which was passed in 2001, provides a safe alternative to parents who are unwilling or unable to keep their babies.
More than 400 babies were safely surrendered statewide from 2001 to 2011.
The council also will vote on the final adoption of a plastic bag ordinance, which will ban single-use plastic bags at supermarkets, pharmacies, retail businesses and convenience food stores. Produce, meat, bulk, gift, donated and bags provided for prescription medications and those smaller than 625 cubic inches would be exempt.
A paper bag made of at least 40 percent post-consumer recyclable materials would be offered for 10 cents, and the money would be kept by the retailer. The fee would take effect in August, six months after the ordinance is implemented, to allow time for a reusable bag campaign.
In other business, the council will consider accepting a grant from the California Office of Traffic Safety for nearly $10,000 to implement the Every 15 Minutes program -- which strives to reduce alcohol-related incidents among youth -- at Arcata High School.
If you go:
What: Arcata City Council meeting
Where: City Council chamber, 736 F St.
When: Wednesday at 6 p.m.
Lorna Rodriguez can be reached at 441-0506 or firstname.lastname@example.org. Follow her on Twitter @LornaARodriguez.