Oregon may ban plastic bags

State lawmakers propose making plastic bags illegal and charging 5 cents for paper bags, starting in 2012.

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Proposed legislation led by Sen. Mark Hass and Sen. Jason Atkinson aims to make plastic bags illegal in Oregon, as well as charging 5 cents for paper bags.

The proposed legislation only affects larger businesses, who would keep the revenue from the paper bag charge.

In Portland, Mayor Sam Adams has been working on a plan to reduce disposable bag use for three years. In 2008, as a city commissioner, he floated the idea of charging a fee on plastic bags but dropped it last year, citing the recession. Members of a “Ban the Bag” coalition plan to hold a rally at City Hall on Wednesday to pressure city leaders to take another run at the issue.

Hass and Atkinson, meanwhile, may have public opinion on their side. The California State Assembly is considering what would be the first statewide ban on plastic bags. About a dozen U.S. cities have adopted prohibitions, following San Francisco’s lead in 2007.

Read more at OregonLive.com.

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