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CA ballot breakdown: Props 65, 67 duel over plastic bags, plus what Prop 57 could mean for prisons

Citizens vote on Election Day at Fire Station #71 in Alhambra, Los Angeles County, on November 6, 2012 in California.
Citizens vote on Election Day at Fire Station #71 in Alhambra, Los Angeles County, on November 6, 2012 in California.

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Plastic grocery bags have long been a topic of debate in California.

Currently, under SB 270, they are banned from being given to customers at major retailers throughout the state. However, two propositions on this November’s ballot could potentially change what happens to the money collected from selling carry-out bags, or even repeal the ban altogether.

Proposition 65 leaves the plastic bag ban in place and goes a step further in stipulating that money collected from the sale of bags at grocery stores (i.e. the 10 cents you pay when you forget to bring your reusable bags) would go to a fund that would be managed by the state Wildlife Conservation Board, and could be used for things like recycling, litter pick-up, and even drought mitigation.

Proposition 67, meanwhile, is a referendum on the plastic bag ban, with a ‘yes’ vote being in support of upholding the ban and a ‘no’ vote in support of repealing it. Even though both measures appear on the ballot, only the proposition that has the most support will be enacted.

Also on the November ballot will be Proposition 57, an initiative backed by Governor Jerry Brown that, if passed, would give inmates more parole and good behavior opportunities. It would also shift the responsibility of deciding whether to charge a juvenile as an adult from prosecutors to judges. It, like Prop 47, is designed to lower the number of inmates in California’s overcrowded prisons, but opponents say the measure isn’t well-drafted and would let people in prison for crimes like rape or human trafficking to be released early.

Today on AirTalk, we’ll break down each of these three measures and tell you who’s supporting the props, who isn’t and why.


Marisa Lagos, reporter for KQED’s California Government and Politics Desk