California Lawmaker Wants to Get Rid of Paper Receipts

A receipt prints from the back of a touch screen voting machine as Floridians cast their ballots November 2, 2004 in St. Petersburg, Florida. Polls indicate the race between U.S. President George W. Bush and Democratic presidential nominee U.S. Sen. John Kerry (D-MA) is too close to call. (Photo by …
Tim Boyles/Getty

A California lawmaker is looking to flex his legislative muscle to pass a bill that would get rid of all paper receipts in the state, saying the paper trail they leave produces too much waste.

Assembly member Phil Ting (D-San Francisco) introduced AB 161, otherwise known as the “Skip the Slip” bill, on Tuesday. If the bill passes the California statehouse, all businesses in the state would be required to issue electronic receipts by 2022.

Businesses would be allowed to issue the receipts by email or text unless a customer specifically asks for a hard copy of the receipt.

Ting unveiled the legislation at a press conference, where he had one of his staffers dress up as a giant receipt outlining the reasons why the bill should be passed.

“Most of us don’t need a physical receipt for every transaction. It doesn’t make sense to kill so many trees and produce 12 billion pounds of carbon emissions, the equivalent of one million cars on the road, to make something we don’t often need,” Ting said in a statement.

The proposed legislation cracking down on paper receipts comes not too long after Golden State lawmakers approved a measure banning plastic straws.

In September 2018, former Gov. Jerry Brown signed legislation that would ban plastic straws from being served at restaurants in the state unless a customer specifically asks for one.


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