NJ Bill Looks to Completely Ban the Sale of Non-flushable Wipes
For years, select New Jersey lawmakers have been trying to pass a law requiring that all packages of non-flushable wipes be labeled with the warning "Do Not Flush."
But in the latest version of the proposal, crafted by the executive director of the Middlesex County Utilities Authority, sale of these products would be banned altogether.
Legislation introduced on Feb. 27 by Sen. Joseph Cryan, D-Union, makes it unlawful for anyone to "sell, offer for sale, or distribute for sale" a non-flushable disposable wipe product.
The cloth-like products are typically made of materials that do not break down or disintegrate when submerged in water, the bill notes.
"This results in significant harm to sewage and septic systems, causing pipes, pumps, and water treatment systems to get clogged and require costly repairs," the bill says.
Under the bill, a first offense would be subject to a penalty of up to $10,000. Additional offenses can result in fines of up to $20,000. A violation can also result in a cease and desist order from the Attorney General.
As of this writing, there is no companion measure in the Assembly.
Previous bills targeting the issue focused on the labeling of non-flushable products. A bill introduced in January 2022 would have required a "Do Not Flush" warning on these products, and prohibited the sale of such products that did not include a warning.