Plastic Ordinance Still an Issue with City


The Glendale City Council once again looked at the ordinance amending Title 8, Chapter 8.42 of the Glendale Municipal Code to prohibit the use of polystyrene products and single use plastics.

The discussion continued with some theatrics of bakery goods being tossed to those on the dais by Councilmember Ara Najarian, who was making a point of plastics that may be prohibited. The items he used were from an Armenian food market that were packaged in plastic containers.

His point was the ordinance would be a hardship on local businesses that had to make certain things packaged within the City of Glendale were not made of polystyrene.
Councilmember Elen Asatryan voiced her concern about outreach and said she had been contacted by business owners who told her due to supply chain issues and costs this would be difficult for them.

However, David Jones, Glendale sustainability officer, presented cost comparisons of polystyrene products to more sustainable products. Those examples included a 12 ounce bowl product; those that are made with polystyrene cost $60 for 1,000 bowls compared to paper bowls of the same size that cost $40 for 1,000. The clamshell container that restaurants use for food to go are polystyrene and cost $115 for 1,000 compared to compostable sugarcane-based products that would sell for $190 for 1,000 or other take-out alternatives [non polystyrene] at $112 for 1,000. He added that as of the time he checked, all items were readily available.

In addition, Jones proposed an exemption of any items that were packaged outside of Glendale and brought into the City. So if a restaurant or food business owner purchased lasagna outside the City and sold it as is, even if it was packed in polystyrene it would be exempt. However if that lasagna was either made in the City of Glendale, or would be sliced into portions and sold separately those food items could not be placed in polystyrene packaging.

The discussion continued with questions of outreach and how that was done. Asatryan also asked if staff or anyone knew how the outreach/process was done in the 170 other cities within California that had already passed this type of ordinance.
In the end, the Council did not take a vote but sent it back again to staff to do more study and come back with a more detailed presentation.

In other news, the Council voted to purchase personal protective equipment/turnout gear for the Glendale Fire Dept.

The Council voted to approve the Beeline maintenance facility bus electrification and parking design. The approval allowed an agreement between the City and Stantec Architecture Inc. and The LeFlore Group LLC.

The was also approval of the City holding the municipal elections for March 2024.