Monday, January 7, 2013 - Updated 02:57 PM

Battling bottle ban in Concord

Battling bottle ban in Concord
Activists’ anger not kept bottled up
January 6, 2013

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57

A new shot has been fired in the battle in Concord over the plastic water bottle ban, with opponents now vowing to repeal the controversial law — considered the first of its kind in the nation — that went into effect Tuesday.

“People should have the freedom to buy a legal product in the town they live in,” contends Robin Garrison, who has spearheaded a group called Concord Residents for Consumer Choice that hopes to bring single-serve plastic water bottles under 1 liter back to stores in town. “It should not be outlawed.”

The group last week filed a petition with 16 signatures — six more than needed — to get a repeal vote placed on the annual town meeting’s warrant in April.

Garrison, an unlikely warrior in the water war who fills her kids reusable water bottles with filtered tap water from her kitchen sink, believes consumers should have the right to buy what they like. “It’s not cigarettes. It’s not something harmful,” she said. “The ironic thing is that it’s healthy for you.”

She and other backers of the 
repeal drive are facing a formidable foe: Jean Hill, a grandmother who feels passionately that discarded plastic water bottles are polluting the planet.

“It took three years to get the (ban) and I’m going to fight to keep it,” said Hill. “I’m 85, but I’m mean.”

Hill said disposable water bottles flushed down storm drains are creating massive “floating islands of plastic” in the oceans, while their production and distribution consumes millions of gallons of fuel.

“These people are very concerned about their rights but they have no sense of their obligations as citizens,” she said.

Hill is going to face another enemy: The International Bottled 
Water Association on Friday issued a statement saying it was working to “prepare for the next steps in the fight against the law.”

Garrison refuted suggestions that the beverage industry was bankrolling the repeal drive, saying that while a lobbyist sat in one of their meetings, her group has 
received no financial backing.

“This was a totally grass-roots endeavor,” she said.

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Comments

+19 -2

I think mean old 85 year olds are polluting the planet.
+26 -6

Age is not the problem here. Liberals of all ages are mean towards all people whose brains are not located in the colon, like theirs.
+3 -25

I believe you meant to say: Age is not the problem here. Conservatives of all ages are mean towards all people whose brains are not located in the colon, like theirs.
+6 -3

At best you sound like a Jr High school student, at worst mildly retarded! Move on little boy!
+13 -0

I thought the ban was in Concord MASS?
+3 -8

It is Concord MASS, not Concord NH. Apparently Richard Weir gets his information from Michele Bachmann.
+2 -0

A good yuck. Out of town people always screw this up.
+3 -0

Wonder if this has any connection with Paul Ware and AG Martha Coakley...
+16 -2

Sorry, but I'm seriously confused. Why did they ban plastic bottles of water and not plastic bottles of soda? This makes ABSOLUTELY NO SENSE!
+4 -2

Yours is not to question why but to please the deputies of the esteemed leader.
+15 -2

You know something,,,I watched a six episode series on the history channel, narrated by Charles kuralt. 6 hrs of the bravery and wisdom exhibited by the people of NEW ENGLAND in 1775-1787. Where the hell did that go? Government telling us we can't drink bottled water, how big a soda can be, whether we can have salt, etc etc etc. What has happened to us? Is it not time, to throw off this yoke of tyranny? To send King George packing? The Plate says "live Free or Die" I suppose our alternative according to some is to "DIE".
+6 -0

Goo thought but wrong state plate. This is happening in Concord, MA.
+6 -0

To grnmonster, I agree we are letting the government regulate way too much of our lives and we are allowing them to make laws that I don't think they have the authority to make. We, as Americans, should never relent more power to the government. Everytime we follow these imbecile laws that they make we are giving away our freedoms. They may seem like small concessions at the time but they add up over time and then we will no longer be a free society.
+14 -1

this is Mass, can't imagine NH doing something so stupid, well maybe down the road now that the liberals have begun to take over the state, sadly enough.
+3 -3

That could change if the DEFEATED left Massachusetts as many said they would after the last election cycle and moved to NH.
+7 -4

Damned hippies! They're the so and sos that told us thirty odd years ago, that America's drinking water stunk and that we should ALL drink bottled water......turns out our drinking water's fine, but it's all the fault of those eeeeevil water bottling companies, that the hippie's moron brethren've been littering for those same three decades. If they want to really do some good......let them lead the way to resurect the God that they murdered.
+10 -0

Such tree-hugging enviro-whackos could only get away with this in Concord, MA...not NH!! The LFOD folks would have none of it!!
+12 -0

We should all help Ms. Hall ih her "fight. We should donate all of our empty water bottles to her cause by putting them in boxes and leaving them on her doorstep so that she can "recycle" them.
+0 -1

I'm sure she wouldn't mind. The problem isn't bottles on the doorstep that can easily be recycled. The problem is people that leave them in gutters on the street so they end up in the storm drainage sewers and the rivers and streams and oceans.
+1 -1

Agreed. Double mistake in the print edition (will correction appear tomorrow?)...The headline and the photo caption had Concord NH.
+9 -0

“People should have the freedom to buy a legal product in the town they live in,” contends Robin Garrison, who has spearheaded a group called Concord Residents for Consumer Choice that hopes to bring single-serve plastic water bottles under 1 liter back to stores in town. “It should not be outlawed.” Aaaahhh the voice of reason Thank You Robin Garrison
+11 -0

When are these open and tolerant folks going to donate some land to build public housing for new immigrants and our poor? I'm sure that these folks would be eager to take in these folks in and call them Concordians.
+4 -0

A true Concord liberal would have their kids bussed to the Boston Public Schools.
+4 -0

A true Concord liberal would have their kids bussed to the Boston Public Schools.
+2 -4

a whole 16 signatures?!?!? Sure sounds like people in Concord are up in arms!!
+10 -1

Ban plastic bottles Ban sugary drinks Ban bullets Ban guns Ban, ban, ban p.s. Massachusetts sucks
+5 -1

Eventually the liberals will make everything illegal in Massachusetts other than smoking pot.
+8 -0

DON'T keep refiling old plastic bottles..they start breaking down, esp. when exposed to sunlight, to make them biodegradable...as that begins to happen...you start drinking the plastic chemicals used to make the bottle. Coke makes returnable reusable plastic bottles made of the same class of non leaching plastic used in I.V.'s in hospitals...as do beer companies for use at public events...but this is going on in Germany...you know, the economic power house of Europe. Full recycling is a major profit center if managed by a partnership of Gov. and Private interests...but in Massachusetts..it would end up being a 'Hack-O-Rama'. Toi Toi Toi Deutschland ! ! !
+10 -0

I would suggest some outfit just start producing a product line with 1.1 liter water bottles. Those are bigger than the cutoff for the regulation and thus exempt. Market them as big enough to share.
+3 -4

Put 5 cents on it and they will be recycled
+8 -0

I personally don't drink bottled water for the single reason that I think it's ridiculous to throw away something that simply held clean water. I filter my tap water to drink. However, this is not something that should be under government control, this is an issue of the mindset of the average american. People need to embrace the environmental impacts of their choices and until this happens no amount of government regulation is going to matter. I try to buy products that don't have a ton of wasteful packaging just because I hate throwing away a ton of cardboard or plastic covering the actual item I purchased. But this is just another example of the government trying to control human behavior and this is one of the reasons why we have such a large, intrusive, nanny-state government. People should be free to purchase what they want but they should also be aware of the impacts their purchases have to the environment. The effort expended to get this bill passed would have been better spent sending out information on the impact of bottled water. And finally, where does the town get the authority to decide what can and can't be sold in their town? Can the government simply make any law they want without some official charter empowering them to do so? I thought all levels of government only held the power given to them in constitutions and charters. I'm pretty sure that the town does not have this authority.
+12 -1

Oh, please, Jean Hill, who are you trying to kid? Yourself maybe? It's not about the environment, it's about you. You still being relevant, you having a crusade, you having meaning, you being noticed, you being remembered. You, you, you. Narcissism knows no age limits.
+6 -0

Ban this. Ban that. Lets ban everything. If it's a problem, lets ban it. If it costs to much ban it. If it's to loud, lets ban it. If it doesn't look right, lets ban it. I think we ought to ban the idiots that come up with crap like this, but then I would be one of them.
+8 -0

Sad to think that where brave men stood up against the British tyranny in April 1775 these type of socialists have taken over. I'd wager those brave men would have accepted these pesky and convenient water bottles on their march to North Bridge that morning. Ms Hill would have prohibited those brave men from carrying/owning state-of-the art firearms in Concord then if she was there.
+5 -0

I drive through parts of Concord every day, they are building houses that could fit a family of at least 12, not sure all that space is needed for you average family of 4. How much of a waste is that?
+4 -1

Ms. Hill won't stop with this ban; she has tasted blood... Women in politics; more fascistic than Hitler. I have to fight the urge to do a water bottle drive by... Aarrgh!
+4 -0

All you need is Moonbats ruining everything they touch.
+6 -0

Please note the standard elitist mentality, in this liberal's statement: "These people are very concerned about their rights but they have no sense of their obligations as citizens”. Not a one of us non-elitists have any idea of what we're doing. We need to be told what is best for us, and how we should live our lives. We're all going to hear Granny's exact same statement over the next month or so, with regard to the Second Amendment. Us non-elitists certainly, "...have no sense of [our] obligations as citizens", when it comes to the Second Amendment, right Granny?
+7 -0

How many of you actually flush these bottles so that they end up polluting our oceans,Really folks flush this product,man I hate to see their plumbing bills,it's a stupid excuse and I don't think folks do it,This lady should go bake to sewing a blanket or anything to keep herself busy.
+0 -2

Not flushed down the plumbing. They are flushed off the roads and sidewalks into the sewer drains and into the rivers, lakes, streams, and the ocean. There is already a feature on Earth called the Great Pacific Garbage Patch. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Great_Pacific_Garbage_Patch Perhaps outright banning isn't the best way to stop pollution of plastic bottles, but I do think the problem is large enough to warrant at least some regulation. Maybe just add a 5 cent or 10 cent deposit to the price of bottles would be the easiest. Maybe increase penalties for those caught improperly disposing. I don't mind you having freedoms that don't interfere with the freedoms of others. Fill your home up with plastic bottles if you want, but please don't dispose of them in the street, the park, the sidewalks, or on neighbors property.
+1 -0

Simkatu The great pacific garbage patch was caused by the tsunami in japan. Not Californian's water bottles
+3 -0

Look for me on the Concord Common. I'm selling water out of my SUV. I'll be the one wearing the bow tie. Okay I'll be the one wearing the bow tie and the argyle sweater. Okay I'll be the one wearing the bowie tie, the argyle sweater and have Obama and Warren bumper stickers on the SUV. Okay I'll be the.... well never mind.
+2 -1

Again: About one Billion plastic bottles a year end up in land fill in the USA! If this is not considered to be a problem, why ban them anywhere?
+1 -0

CNN got the state wrong too on rolling text. "Journalists" have many sheep and plagiarists among them doing no fact checking. One must wonder how many even live near the area they report on to not know what is going on!

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