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Austin's Ban on Single-Use Bags Begins

Friday, Mar 1, 2013  |  Updated 10:57 AM CDT
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Austin's Ban on Single-Use Bags Begins

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Austin's ban on retail single-use bags has begun.

The city started its ban on certain thin paper and plastic bags amid environmental concerns on Friday. The Austin City Council approved the ordinance a year ago.

Retailers will be allowed to offer thicker plastic and paper bags with handles, which Austin officials consider reusable. Retailers will decide whether to charge for those bags. Customers can also take reusable bags to stores.

Ban exemptions include dry-cleaning bags, newspaper delivery bags, some types of takeout food bags and bags used for fish, meat, poultry, produce, bulk goods and pharmaceuticals.

Businesses that do not comply could face a Class C misdemeanor punishable by daily fines of up to $2,000.

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