If Fulton County is going to eliminate single-use plastic products in any building it owns, operates or leases, it will have to wait awhile.
“There is no way we are going to come up with language on this resolution that will satisfy everyone on this issue,” said Fulton County Board of Commissioners Chair Robb Pitts, who sponsored the resolution to do so by Jan. 1.
At the board’s June 19 recess meeting at Assembly Hall in downtown Atlanta, not only was Pitts’ original resolution defeated, but one offered by District 1 Commissioner Liz Hausmann just to hold that resolution until the commission’s next meeting also failed.
Pitts’ original resolution failed for lack of a majority as he, District 3 Commissioner Lee Morris and District 4 Commissioner Natalie Hall voted yes, but Hausmann, District 5 Commissioner Marvin Arrington Jr. and District 2 Commissioner Bob Ellis abstained.
In the motion to hold the resolution for further review by the commission, Hausmann, Ellis and Morris voted yes while Pitts voted no, with Arrington and Hall not voting.
During the discussion on the original resolution, Hausmann said there were still words in the resolution which concerned her, such as the term “phased out.”
“I would really like for us to take a second look at this resolution at another meeting and it would not hurt, and I would like to hold it and give some thoughtful review to every component of it,” she said.
Arrington said he was not ready to move on this resolution yet.
The June 19 vote was at least the second step in the process to phase out single-use plastics. At its April 17 recess meeting, the board voted 4-0 to approve new legislation sponsored by Pitts and co-sponsored by Morris to immediately begin to phase out the use of single-use plastics and substitute those products with non-plastic alternatives by Jan. 1.
“Fulton County is joining so many other municipalities, states and counties in doing our part to drive down plastic pollution by eliminating wasteful plastics, which never break down and end up back in the ecosystem and possibly our food supply,” Pitts said in a news release then. “In a year when the Earth Day theme is ‘Protect Our Species,’ we at Fulton County are ready to achieve that goal.”