The Baltimore City Council gave preliminary approval this week to a measure to ban business use of plastic bags, to go into effect April 1. The measure was granted preliminary approval following a hearing on related legisaltion to impose a new “bag tax” of 5 cents per plastic bag, a measure that has been implemented in other jurisdictions.
The proposed ban would make Baltimore one of the first East Coast cities to outlaw plastic bags — decried for littering Baltimore’s waterways. But it faces many obstacles before becoming law.
Retailers, stunned by the council’s move, pledged to fight the ban. And Mayor Stephanie Rawlings-Blake said she would veto it. Shoppers could end up paying more, the mayor said, noting that paper bags cost merchants at least twice as much as plastic.