Sacramento poised to ban plastic bags

New city ban would go into effect January 1, 2015

In the bag

Sacramento took a big step toward banning plastic bags this week.

On Tuesday, a city panel recommended a new ordinance prohibiting single-use plastic bags at all stores and supermarkets. The ban would go into effect January 1, 2015, and the city estimates enforcement costs at approximately $100,000 a year.

Initially, it was uncertain as to whether the city would attempt to ban plastic bags at all stores, or just major supermarkets such as Safeway and Raley's.

According to the city staff report, California retailers distribute some 19 billion plastic bags annually, but fewer than 5 percent are recycled.

Fines for providing customers plastic bags will range from $200 to $25,000.