Law­mak­ers pon­der ban on plas­tic re­tail bags

Daily Freeman (Kingston, NY) - - LOCAL NEWS - Mid-Hud­son News Net­work and Free­man staff

KINGSTON >> Ul­ster County law­mak­ers are con­sid­er­ing ban­ning plas­tic bags in re­tail es­tab­lish­ments.

Those bags, used in busi­nesses rang­ing from su­per­mar­kets to cloth­ing stores, are con­sid­ered by some to be a scourge on the en­vi­ron­ment be­cause they are not biodegrad­able, said Richard Parete, chair­man of the Leg­is­la­ture’s En­ergy and En­vi­ron­ment Com­mit­tee.

“The main thing is to get those plas­tic bags out of the waste stream be­cause they don’t re­cy­cle, they don’t de­grade, they are just not good for the en­vi­ron­ment,” said Parete, R-Mable­town. “The goal is to get peo­ple to use re­us­able bags, to bring the same bags in ev­ery time they shop.”

Dis­cus­sion of the pos­si­ble ban is in the early stages. Among the is­sues is whether small stores should be in­cluded.

Ul­ster County al­ready has banned the use of poly­styrene (Sty­ro­foam) cups and take-out con­tain­ers by restau­rants in the county, as well as by the county it­self.

A ban on plas­tic re­tail bags in the vil­lage of New Paltz took ef­fect in April 2015. Pos­si­ble pro­hi­bi­tions of such bags also have been dis­cussed by the city of Kingston and Dutchess County.

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