WaPo Again Pushes for Statewide Bag Tax in Md., Fails to Mention Newspaper Bags Exempt

Yesterday I critiqued Washington Post staffer Michael Laris's reporting on the Montgomery County [Md.] Council passing into law a 5-cent bag tax effective January 1, 2012. Laris omitted the fact that the county bag tax has a glaring exemption for newspaper bags, including the sleeves that protect home-delivered newspapers from the elements. This was despite the fact that his newspaper's editorial board has been in favor of similar bans which carve out similar exemptions for newspaper bags.

Well, today the Post editorial staff once again beat the drum for a statewide bag tax to mirror that of Montgomery County's. And yet again the Post conveniently omitted the fact that such a bill would likely exempt newspaper bags. And yet, here's how the Post preachily concluded its editorial entitled "Montgomery Cleans Up"*:

In applauding the council’s move, [County Executive] Leggett characterized the bag tax as a “tangible way people can say, ‘Look, I’m doing my part.’ ” Now it’s time for the rest of the state to do its part.

* the online edition has a different header: "Montgomery County's sensible plastic bag tax."

Ken Shepherd
Ken Shepherd
Ken Shepherd is a writer living in New Carrollton, Md.