Manitoba premier promises plastic bag ban, liquor delivery in second term

PEI started in July and a ban is close in Newfoundland and Labrador

Manitoba may become the next province to ban single-use plastic bags to help the environment.

Prince Edward Island started in July and a ban is close in Newfoundland and Labrador.

Eight days after winning a second term, Premier Brian Pallister said his Progressive Conservative government will begin consultations with the private sector on ways to eliminate the use of plastic bags.

“We think that many Manitobans understand that this is an item that could be dealt with, needs to be dealt with and hasn’t been dealt with for a long time,” Pallister said Wednesday.

“I think it’s a smart move.”

READ MORE: Kimberley resident calls for City-wide ban on plastic bags

The consultations are among 100 things that Pallister has said he wants to tackle in the first 100 days of his new mandate. Most were promised during the campaign for the Sept. 10 election that returned the Tories to power with 36 of 57 legislature seats. But the plastic ban is new.

While many municipalities across the country have banned single-use plastic bags at grocery stores and other retail outlets — including Thompson and The Pas in northern Manitoba —provincewide bans are new.

Prime Minister Justin Trudeau said in June that the federal government was starting regulatory work to ban toxic single-use plastics. Retailers such as Sobeys have already promised to move toward a nationwide ban on bags.

Manitoba Opposition NDP Leader Wab Kinew said people would like to see other plastic items, such as straws, banned as well. He also said he doubted Pallister would follow through on the promise.

“For us, it’ll be important to see whether this government is actually serious about this,” Kinew said.

READ MORE: Mayor says plastic-bag ban bylaw will be delayed

Among other items on Pallister’s 100-day list is a change to provincial rules so that restaurants could deliver liquor to customers’ doors.

The province also plans to restructure a complex financing arrangement for Investors Group Field, the stadium that is home to the CFL Winnipeg Blue Bombers. It has run over budget and faced costly repairs. Pallister said the aim is to make the deal more transparent and fair to taxpayers.

The government also wants to identify land and other property it no longer needs so that it can be sold, as well as lift many restrictions on Sunday and holiday retail shopping hours.

Pallister was re-elected after fulfilling a promise to reduce the provincial sales tax and bring down the deficit. One of the main promises for his second term is to balance the budget and start to eliminate, over a 10-year period, education taxes on property.

More immediately, Pallister plans to reconvene the legislature at the end of the month, pass the spring budget and make at least a minor change to his cabinet.

Former Crown Services minister Colleen Mayer was the only inner-circle member defeated in last week’s election. Pallister would not say whether he will simply replace her with a backbencher or change up other portfolios. But he hinted any change is several weeks away.

“First we have to pass a budget, then we’ll talk,” Pallister said.

This report by The Canadian Press was first published Sept. 18, 2019.

Steve Lambert, The Canadian Press

READ MORE: Plastic bag ban gets thumbs up at public meeting

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter

Just Posted

UPDATED: Hwy 93 reopens after rockslide blocks traffic in Fairmont Hot Springs

Highway at Fairmont between Dutch Creek and Westside Road blocked until geotechnical team can assess

Rob Morrison sworn in as Kootenay-Columbia MP

Parliament set to reconvene on Thursday with election of House Speaker, Throne Speech

Break-and-enter at Family Pantry in Canal Flats

Weekly RCMP report, November 24-December 1

Role-playing exercise builds empathy and reconciliation

Blanket Exercise Tuesday, December 10th at Akisq’nuk; all welcome but please register

VIDEO: Led by ‘Marriage Story,’ Netflix dominates Golden Globe noms

Netflix flexed its muscles across all categories, just as it is girding for battle with a host of new streaming services

Wealth of Canadians divided along racial lines, says report on income inequality

One interesting finding was that racialized men have a higher employment rate than non-racialized men

B.C. universities post $340 million worth of surpluses thanks to international student tuition

Students call for spending as international enrolment produces huge surpluses at many universities

Conservatives urge Morneau to deliver ‘urgent’ fall economic update

Morneau says the first thing the Liberals plan to do is bring in their promised tax cut for the middle class

INFOGRAPHIC: How much money did your local university or college make last year?

B.C. university and colleges posted a combined $340 million surplus in 2018/19

B.C. creates $8.5M organization to improve safety for health care workers

Group will bring together unions, province, health care organizations

Kovrig clings to humour as ‘two Michaels’ near one year in Chinese prison

Their detention is widely viewed as retaliation for Canada’s arrest of Chinese high-tech scion Meng Wanzhou

Brain injury from domestic abuse a ‘public health crisis,’ says B.C. researcher

Nearly 80% of the domestic violence victims who reported to police last year were women

Most Read