Oregon passes bill banning restaurants from offering customers plastic straws unless requested

Oregon passes bill banning restaurants from offering customers plastic straws unless requested
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The Oregon House overwhelmingly passed a bill Wednesday night that would prohibit restaurants from giving customers plastic straws unless requested.

The House voted 48-12, to approve the measure, which is expected to be signed by Gov. Kate Brown (D). It would make Oregon the second state to place a ban on plastic straw use in restaurants, following California, according to The Associated Press. Drive-thrus will still be able to give out plastic straws.

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Brown said Thursday the bill is aimed at raising the public’s awareness regarding the use of plastic utensils and the impact they have on the environment, the AP reported.

While the bill passed with little objection, state Rep. Werner Reschke (R) was against the legislation because he thinks the state is banning too many things.

“There was no evidence provided that plastic straws used by Oregonians cause birds and turtles to have straws in them,” he said. “We’ve been banning all sorts of things that we don’t do. It’s not the right way.”

The Oregon Senate passed the bill last month, though the two chambers must agree on a technical change to the legislation before it hits Brown’s desk.

Several cities, including Seattle and New York City, have similar restrictions on plastic straws in place.