Bag Fee

Under a bill passed by the Colorado State Legislature in 2021, the State began placing a 10-cent fee on all single-use disposable bags supplied by retailers to customers (plastic and paper bags) on January 1, 2023. The bill bans single-use plastic bags and polystyrene to-go food containers starting January 1, 2024. There are exceptions, please see the information below.

Fee on Disposable Plastic and Paper Bags (Effective Jan. 1, 2023)
  • Major* grocery stores and supermarkets
  • Major convenience stores
  • Major liquor stores
  • Pharmacies and drug stores
  • Major retailers
  • Other major stores or retail food establishments providing single use plastic carryout bags
  • Major Temporary Vendors

*those with more than three locations or with locations outside Colorado

  • Smaller* stores
  • Restaurants
  • Farmers and roadside markets
  • Bags for loose, bulk items including hardware, bolts, screws, nuts, fruits, vegetables, grains, candy, laundry, or garments, prescription medication, frozen food, meat, seafood, plants, flowers, and other items that could otherwise contaminate other items
  • Bags for unwrapping food and bakery goods such as those used by restaurants for take-home or to-go food
  • Bags for small pets like fish, crustaceans, mollusks and insects

*those with three or fewer locations operating solely in Colorado

Covered under the ban and bag fee

  • Major* grocery stores and supermarkets
  • Major convenience stores
  • Major liquor stores
  • Pharmacies and drug stores
  • Major retailers
  • Other major stores or retail food establishments providing single use plastic carryout bags
  • Major Temporary Vendors

*those with more than three locations or with locations outside Colorado

Exemptions from the ban and bag fee

  • Smaller* stores
  • Restaurants
  • Farmers and roadside markets
  • Bags for loose, bulk items including hardware, bolts, screws, nuts, fruits, vegetables, grains, candy, laundry, or garments, prescription medication, frozen food, meat, seafood, plants, flowers, and other items that could otherwise contaminate other items
  • Bags for unwrapping food and bakery goods such as those used by restaurants for take-home or to-go food
  • Bags for small pets like fish, crustaceans, mollusks and insects

*those with three or fewer locations operating solely in Colorado

What is the reason for the fee on disposable bags?

The State of Colorado adopted the Fee on disposable Bags to reduce environmental impacts caused by disposable bags. A mandatory fee on disposable bags has been shown to significantly reduce the number of disposable bags used.

How much is the fee?

The fee is ten cents ($0.10) per disposable bag (plastic, paper, or other material including but not limited to compostable material) provided at the checkout.

Where will the paper bag fee go?

Monies from the disposable bag fee will be split 40/60 between the retailer and the City of Castle Pines. The City is required to use the fees for the administration and enforcement costs incurred resulting from this new law or to support further efforts for recycling, composting, or other waste diversion programs and related outreach and educational activities.

Do I have to pay sales tax on the bag fee?

No, customers should not be charged sales tax on the 10-cent bag fees, for retailers that are required to collect and remit the fee to the City.

What disposable bags are not included?

  • bags to store loose or bulk items, such as fruits, vegetables, nuts, grains, candy, or greeting cards; nails, bolts, screws, or other small hardware items; live insects, fish, crustaceans, mollusks, or other small species; and bulk seed, bulk livestock feed, or bulk pet feed;
  • contain or wrap frozen foods, meat, seafood, fish, flowers, potted plants, or other items that, if they were to come in contact with other items, could dampen or contaminate the other items; or
  • contain unwrapped prepared foods or bakery goods.
  • bags used to protect a purchased item from damaging or contaminating other items when placed in a reusable bag;
  • bags provided by pharmacists to contain prescription drugs; or
  • newspaper bags, door-hanger bags, laundry-dry cleaning bags, or bags sold in packages containing multiple bags for uses such as food storage, garbage, pet waste, or yard waste.

What if I’m a retailer that would like to be a part of this but are not required to?

If your business is not a major retailer or covered under the ban and bag fee you may not collect the 10-cent fee from customers for remittance to the City.

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