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Posted on: July 19, 2018

City Bans Plastic Straws in Clock Tower Cafe; Urges Other Businesses to Follow Suit

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The City of Portland has made the decision to ban plastic straws from the Clock Tower Cafe, located within City Hall, and is urging other businesses to follow suit. City Manager Jon Jennings made the decision at the July 18 Sustainability & Transportation Committee meeting following a presentation on single-use plastics from Phoebe MacDonald, a third-grader at Ocean Avenue Elementary School, who encouraged the Council Committee to ban plastic straws or adopt alternatives. 

“Last night Phoebe challenged us all to be better when it comes to protecting our environment from single use items,” said Councilor Spencer Thibodeau, Chair of the Committee. “I am grateful that the City Manager has made the change to ban plastic straws at City Hall and the Sustainability and Transportation Committee challenges all Portland businesses to take measures to do the same.”  

“I want to thank Phoebe for her leadership and for proving that no matter how old you are, you can still make a difference,” said City Manager Jon Jennings. “I’m excited to implement ‘Phoebe’s Rule’ here at City Hall, and hope that it inspires others to do the same.” 

Ms. MacDonald passed out aluminum straws to the Councilors and audience members following a question and answer session with the Committee. Councilors Thibodeau, Batson and Ray then further discussed the idea of banning plastic straws outright in the city of Portland. The Committee decided it wants City staff to poll business owners ahead of holding a public hearing and discussing the issue further at its September meeting.  

Sustainability & Transportation Committee
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