North Andover Voters Ban Plastic Bags, Pet Sales in Town



Voters at the Annual Town Meeting in North Andover voted overwhelmingly to ban plastic bags in food businesses with more than 3,000 square feet.

This will effect Market Basket and other grocery stores and restaurants in town.

To the surprise of many Town Meeting voters, the North Andover Board of Health – who will be in charge of enforcing this ordinance – opposed the ban on plastic bags.

Michelle Davis, chairman of the Board of Health told Town Meeting voters that her board opposed the ordinance because businesses in the Merchants Association opposed the measure, adding that the data put forth on the effectiveness of this ordinance is inconclusive.

The passage of the new ordinance would result in a warning for any business caught using plastic bags. Subsequent violations would cause a $100 per day fine by the Board of Health “until the violation is cured”.

All additional violations will result in a $100 per day fine

The Town Warrant article was proposed by the “Sustainability Committee” to “save the planet”.

The plastic bag ban will take effect January 1, 2024.

North Andover High School Student Erica Parks proposed banning the sale of dogs and pets.


North Andover Town voters also voted overwhelmingly to ban the sale of pets in town, making it unlawful for pet shops to sell or offer for sale; dogs, cats, guinea pigs, or rabbits.

This item was placed on the North Andover Town Warrant by high school student Erica Parks.

Pet shops may provide space for the display of dogs, cats, guinea pigs, or rabbits available for adoption by a public animal control agency or shelter, or an animal rescue organization so long as:

  • The pet shop receives no part of any fees associated with the display or adoption of the animals and has no ownership interest in any of the animals displayed or made available for adoption; and
  • The pet shop maintains no ownership interest in any of the animals displayed or made available for adoption; and
  • The pet shop maintains records sufficient to document the source of each dog, cat, guinea pig, or rabbit the pet shop displays, for at least one year following the date of display.
    Such records shall be made available, immediately upon request, to any animal control officer or any duly appointed officer or representative of the Town.

Violators shall be fined $300 for each unlawful sale or offer for sale.

Any pet shop that makes a provision of space knowingly, and in violation this ordinance, shall be fined $300. Each unlawful provision of space shall constitute a separate violation.

Violations of this new ordinance will be enforced by police officers or animal control officers in North Andover.