In 2021, the Colorado General Assembly enacted House Bill 21-1162. Beginning January 1, 2024, the act prohibits stores and retail food establishments from providing single-use plastic carryout bags to customers. Certain retail food establishments, and small stores that operate solely in Colorado and have 3 or fewer locations, may provide single-use plastic carryout bags.
Between January 1, 2023, and January 1, 2024, a store may furnish a recycled paper carryout bag or a single-use plastic carryout bag to a customer at the point of sale if the customer pays a fee of 10 cents per bag or a higher fee adopted by the municipality or county in which the store is located. On and after January 1, 2024, a store may furnish only a recycled paper carryout bag to a customer at the point of sale at a fee of 10 cents per bag or a higher fee imposed by the municipality or county in which the store is located.
A store is required to remit, on a quarterly basis beginning April 1, 2024, 60% of the carryout bag fee revenues to the municipality or county within which the store is located and may retain the remaining 40% of the carryout bag fee revenues.
Businesses that are included in the single-use bag fee:
Grocery stores and supermarkets
Major convenience stores
Other stores that are a franchise or a chain located outside of Colorado
Other major stores that include self-checkout and delivery services
Major liquor stores
Exemptions from single-use bag fee:
Customers that provide evidence to the store that they are a participant in a federal or state food assistance program
Laundry or dry cleaning services
Smaller businesses with three or fewer locations
Bags used by consumers inside the store for items like produce, bulk items, candy, small hardware items, meat, bakery, or floral items
Restaurants are exempt from the single-use bag fee; however, they will be prohibited from distributing polystyrene foam containers beginning in 2024.