The Latest: NYC lawmakers approve 5-cent plastic bag charge

AP News
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Posted: May 05, 2016 4:45 PM

NEW YORK (AP) — The Latest on New York City's plastic bag law (all times local):

4 p.m.

New York City lawmakers have voted to impose a 5-cent fee for single-use plastic bags.

The City Council approved the measure 28-20 on Thursday.

Backers hope the fee will reduce pollution and unsightly litter from the billions of plastic bags that New Yorkers dispose of annually.

Opponents complain that the fee will amount to a new burden on a heavily taxed population.

The law will cover plastic and paper bags given out by grocery stores, drugstores and other retailers. Stores will get to keep the fees they collect, not the city.

Exemptions include restaurant takeout orders and purchases made with food stamps.

The law will go into effect Oct. 1 if it is signed by Mayor Bill de Blasio.

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11 a.m.

New York City merchants will start charging customers 5 cents for plastic bags under a bill that the City Council is expected to pass.

The City Council is set to vote on the fee Thursday.

Backers hope the fee will reduce pollution and unsightly litter from the billions of plastic bags that New Yorkers dispose of annually.

Opponents say the fee amounts to a new burden on a heavily taxed population.

The law would cover plastic and paper bags given out by grocery stores, drugstores and other retailers. The fee would be kept by the store, not the city.

Exemptions would include restaurant takeout orders and purchases made with food stamps.

The law will go into effect Oct. 1 if it passes and is signed by Mayor Bill de Blasio.