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Environment and Outdoors

Maine House Approves Watered-Down Bill Aimed at Discouraging Plastic Bag Use

AUGUSTA, Maine - The Maine  House has approved a bill aimed at reducing the number of single-use plastic shopping bags in the waste stream.

But the measure is a watered-down version of the original, which would have banned single-use plastic bags.  Nonetheless, Brunswick Rep. Ralph Tucker, a Democrat, says it’s an important step.

“This bill declares as a matter of state policy that we should try to use reusable bags to avoid getting the plastics into our waste stream.” 

The bill was altered in committee, and critics now question what it will accomplish. Local cities and towns, they point out, can already ban the use of plastic bags if they want to, and there are no extra incentives in the legislation to encourage local ordinances.