A measure that has a hearing Tuesday would forbid the spending of state funds by state agencies for the purchase of single-serving bottled water, except under certain circumstances.

The exceptions:

  • Public health and safety preparedness, emergencies, investigations and extended deployments or activations of the office of hazard evaluation and emergency response of the department of health or the department of defense;
  • situations where there is high risk of cross-contamination with non-potable or contaminated water; or
  • situations where there are no reasonable alternatives to bottled water, such as large public events and when large quantities of water may need to be distributed for health and safety reasons.

Senate Bill 2158 was introduced by Democrat Mike Gabbard.

Sen Mike Gabbard speaks to media during Governor Ige's bill signing ceremony. 8 june 2015. photograph Cory Lum/Civil Beat
Sen. Mike Gabbard at a press conference with Gov. David Ige. Cory Lum/Civil Beat

The bill’s language doesn’t say why the state should stop buying bottled water, but the bottles are widely seen as being bad for the environment.

In most communities, tap water is also much cheaper and just as safe.

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