San Luis Obispo moves forward with possible Styrofoam ban

Sep 2, 2014

San Luis Obispo City Council members are considering a ban on food containers like this, as well as other forms of polystyrene.
Credit Flickr member playerx

San Luis Obispo city staff will move forward with plans on how to implement a Styrofoam use ban, should the council vote to approve one down the road.

A special one hour public meeting of the City Council was held Wednesday afternoon. Several members of the public spoke in favor of banning Styrofoam—or polystyrene—at the meeting.

City leaders described it as a "study session." Four out of the five city council members agreed to direct staff to continue working on the issue.

Councilman John Ashbaugh supports the strongest possible version of a ban.

"Just to make my own position clear on this, I support the strongest possible ordinance," said Ashbaugh. "I'd like to see us emulate, follow, or maybe even lead a little bit ahead of where Santa Cruz has gone on this."

Councilman Dan Carpenter was the only one to speak out against it, saying he'd like to see the county take up the issue.

"This council on a regular basis tends to move forward without consideration of staff costs and any other costs that go along with it," said Carpenter. "We tend to spend money haphazardly with these feel-good things."

Once staff has put together an ordinance, the council will revisit the issue again.