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Oregon Plastic Bag Ban Proposal Gains Momentum

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SALEM, Ore. — Oregon grocers and environmental groups already are lining up to support a proposed statewide ban on single-use plastic checkout bags next year.

The proposed ban would take effect by November 2011 and require at least a nickel charge on recycled paper checkout bags. The charge is designed to let stores recover the cost of the paper bags and encourage shoppers to switch to reusable bags.

A hearing Wednesday in Salem on the draft ban proposed for next year's legislative session featured support from the Northwest Grocery Association, retailer Fred Meyer, environmental groups and others.

The Oregonian reports that if the proposal clears the Legislature next year, Oregon would likely be the first state to adopt a statewide ban.

The proposal would exempt pharmacies, restaurants and other shops whose main businesses is preparing food and drink.

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Information from: The Oregonian, http://www.oregonlive.com

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